’We need to educate ourselves and our organisations,’ says head of research

Air pollution is the “fastest growing” protection gap in terms of insurance coverage for climate risks.

That was according to insurance and risk management representative body Airmic, which made the statement after conducting a survey of its members.

It found nearly 40% of respondents said air pollution is a protection gap for their organisations, up from 21% in May 2023.

“Our members report that pollution is a standard exclusion under most policies, while they are not fully aware about liability policies that would respond to allegations of or actual air pollution caused by their organisations, other than if made directly against their directors and officers,” Hoe-Yeong Loke, head of research at Airmic, said.


This came as the House of Commons released a new research briefing on air quality on 19 February 2024.

It highlighted that that poor air quality was considered by the government to be “the largest environmental risk to public health in the UK”.

Airmic said that its members were saying that reinsurers were seeking increasingly detailed information or blanket exclusions when it came to climate risks in general.

“The bigger question perhaps is that buyers think they have cover, but there may be caps, or that insurers may not always be clear on the exceptions,” Hoe-Yeong Loke said.

“This is where we need to educate ourselves and our organisations, so that everyone is clear on what is covered,”