During COP27, WTW was delighted to join the US President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation & Resilience (PREPARE) Call to Action. PREPARE is a US Government initiative to help more than half a billion people in developing countries adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change. The Call to Action urges businesses to make new, significant commitments to signal the critical importance of building climate resilience in partner countries. As part of this Call, WTW, alongside nine other companies, announced specific commitments to support steps that improve climate resilience for consumers and communities.
Head of WTW’s Climate and Resilience Hub, Rowan Douglas CBE, spoke at an event to mark the launch of the PREPARE Call to Action and issued the following remarks:
“Thank you to Secretary Kerry and Administrator Power for the invitation to be a member of the inaugural group of PREPARE’s private sector partners. It is a pleasure to be here on the panel with Brian Deese and our wider industry colleagues. On behalf of WTW CEO, Carl Hess, I’m delighted to accept your Call to Action and outline how we intend to contribute to this vital program.
We answered the Call because we are leaders in the field in PREPARE’s priority areas of Climate Analytics, and Financial Tools and Services.
WTW is a global risk management, human capital, climate and investment adviser, and intermediary with nearly 50,000 colleagues worldwide. That includes 200 here in Egypt and many others in vulnerable countries targeted by PREPARE across Africa, the Americas and Asia. We believe not only that we can, but also that we should, leverage our unique network of colleagues and capabilities to respond to today’s most pressing need and challenge: to help countries and communities on the frontlines of climate change to adapt.
We have always firmly believed in the importance of private sector contributions to address global issues and have worked with the UN and the development community for well over a decade. Often that has been in the context of public-private collaborations like PREPARE. WTW led the formation of the Insurance Development Forum launched at COP15 in Paris. And we incubated the award winning Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment. We are excited to continue our work in this space by responding to this Call.
Here at CoP27 we’re announcing major innovations towards a more resilient future. This includes the development of insurance instruments to protect the livelihoods of those living in vulnerable coastal communities, the financial protection of fragile marine ecosystem assets in the Americas from climate impacts, and climate scenario analysis for the Central Bank of Indonesia.
We’ll bring all our existing capabilities to bear. But to answer the Call of PREPARE we are mobilising our most ambitious collaboration to date. To empower the PREPARE programme, we commit our expertise and resources to develop and drive the Global Resilience Index Initiative (GRII), planned to be fully launched at COP28 by the Insurance Development Forum and UNDRR with the Centre for Greening Finance and Investment.
The GRII will provide open reference data, metrics and projections of climate resilience for all countries worldwide. This critical missing layer of the world's information architecture can support people, policymakers, and businesses to understand climate risks. It will also provide a basis for financing measures to adapt to and build resilience against climate change.
From sovereign debt management to assisting small holder farmers and regional planners, we need to ensure climate information is used in decision-making to help avoid the tragic cost of inaction. If we achieve this structural change, together, we can save millions of lives and livelihoods, both present and future, worldwide.
We are so pleased to be part of the PREPARE Call to Action. Thank you.”