Predicting the Unpredictable: How Insurance Companies Plan for Climate Change with Dr. Kelly Hereid of Liberty Mutual Insurance
Play • 1 hr 7 min

In episode 176 of America Adapts, Doug Parsons hosts Dr. Kelly Hereid, the Director Of Catastrophe Research and Development at Liberty Mutual Insurance. Kelly takes us through the tool of catastrophe modeling and explains why it could be useful for adaptation planners. We also learn how the insurance industry tries to make the uncertain nature of hurricanes and climate change more predictable: “Climate translators” play a critical role in this process.  They also discuss the wild, wild west nature of the climate data and modeling industry and how to avoid using bad information in your adaptation planning. Doug and Kelly also discuss the unique and controversial role Citizens Property Insurance in Florida plays in coastal planning.

Topics covered:

  • What is a ‘climate translator’?
  • How the insurance industry makes climate uncertainty more predictable.
  • What is catastrophe modeling and why it should be used in adaptation planning.
  • Making sense of climate predictions set decades in the future.
  • Translating climate impacts into metrics to make on the ground policy decisions.
  • Dissecting hurricanes and climate impacts into sub perils.
  • The Wild, Wild West nature of the climate modeling and data industry.
  • How does Citizens Property Insurance encourage Floridians to make bad housing decisions.

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