The world?s sixth-largest insurance company warns that property damage due to global warming could bankrupt the world by 2065. Dr. Andrew Dlugolecki, a director at CGNU, Britain?s largest insurance group, told delegates at the recent climate change conference in the Netherlands that the cost of damage caused by changing weather will exceed the world?s wealth.

“Property damage is rising very rapidly, at something like 10 percent a year,” Dr. Dlugolecki said. “We?ve still not yet really begun to see the effects of climate change in the West. What we are seeing so far is largely the result of more people living in areas which are becoming more dangerous. But once this thing begins to happen, it will accelerate extremely rapidly.”

Dlugolecki was one of the contributors to an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report that is due out next year. He says that at the current rate of increase, the damage will exceed the world?s Gross Domestic Product by 2065 and the insurance industry will be in danger of “running out of money” long before that.

“We?ve all seen the storm warnings,” said Mark Johnston of Friends of the Earth, “Now we are being told the financial forecast. These talks must not fail to produce a deal that will prevent future climate chaos.” He was referring to the recent international climate conference in the Netherlands.

Tragically, he made this statement before the conference ended in an impasse, as we reported in an earlier Whitleysworld news story, because the United States refused to cut down on greenhouse emissions, even though we are the world?s biggest polluter. The Clinton administration could not come to terms with other nations’ demands that the US reduce pollution rather than simply planting more trees. George W. Bush has stated that a “wait and see attitude” is the stance his administration will take toward global warming.

Despite the situation, it appears unlikely that the US will take any action in the foreseeable future.

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