Climate Change - Coastal Property Risks and Insurance

The coastal risks of storm surge, coastal erosion and gradual sea level rise are excluded by many general insurance policies in Australia. Consumers should ensure they are familiar with their policy and are aware of what risks the policy will not respond to.

Projections and forecasts for properties potentially exposed to gradual sea level rise are expected to be made available by governments in due course. Consumers concerned about this issue should note the predicted timeframes around the predictions in relation to their anticipated tenure at the property, and should contact their local council if they have detailed concerns.

The general insurance industry is continuing to call upon governments to focus on four key adaptation initiatives:

  1. Strengthening building codes, to prevent brittle building syndrome in the future.
  2. Risk appropriate land use planning, to limit exposure to current and future hazards.
  3. Upgrading mitigation infrastructure, to protect existing communities.
  4. Removing taxation disincentives on insurance products, to encourage individual to take responsibility for their own recovery.

The Insurance Council is working closely with government on these issues and is preparing to participate in an examination of climate change related insurance impacts by the Productivity Commission.


Download Industry in Focus - Coastal Vulnerability Risks