Natural catastrophes and man-made disasters in 2011: historic losses surface from record earthquakes and floods
This study reports on the worldwide economic losses from over 300 natural catastrophes and man-made disasters recorded in 2011 and the cost to the global insurance industry. It specifically analyses the catastrophes cost to society, the insured losses and the gap between insured and non-insured economic losses, which points to a widespread lack of insurance. A special chapter on flooding in this edition of sigma reveals that flood loss potential can be just as high as that of earthquakes and storms. Analysing the floods in Thailand and their impact on the global manufacturing supply chain, the report points at the combination of factors — large affected areas, high concentration of property values, high insurance penetration, and insufficient pre-disaster risk preparedness — that multiplied the loss. It calls for businesses, governments, and societies at large to increasingly consider more stringent natural catastrophe and man-made disaster risk prevention and mitigation measures, especially in emerging countries of growing significance to the interconnected global economy
and for the insurance industry to further examine the implications of global supply-chains for a more holistic risk assessment going forward.