Swiss Re has signed the world’s first long-term purchase agreement for direct air capture and storage of carbon dioxide, worth $10 million over ten years, as part of its commitment to reach net-zero emissions in its own operations by 2030.
The global reinsurer has partnered with Climeworks, a specialist in carbon dioxide air capture technology, to combat climate change. The companies have also agreed to collaborate on developing risk management knowledge and risk transfer solutions, as well as to explore future investment and project finance opportunities.
The partnership gives Swiss Re early access to the new carbon removal risk pools and asset classes.
According to the company, the technological carbon removal solution offered by Climeworks in Iceland filters carbon dioxide (CO2) from ambient air using geothermal energy – considered to be the safest and most durable form of all carbon removal solutions that are commercially available today.
Swiss Re stated that the length of the term of ten years and the total value of $10 million are so far unmatched in the voluntary market for this type of high-quality carbon removal.
Swiss Re Institute’s recent report on the insurance rationale for carbon removal solutions revealed that the insurance sector is uniquely positioned to offer support on three fronts: through long-term purchase agreements, providing insurance capacity for evolving risk pools, and investments in new asset classes.
Swiss Re has committed to achieving net-zero emissions in its insurance and investment business by 2050, and in its own operations by 2030.
Swiss Re’s group chief executive officer and co-chair of the World Economic Forum’s Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, said: “To mitigate the risks of climate change, the world needs to scale-up carbon removal on top of, not instead of emission reductions. By partnering with Climeworks we can play to our strengths in this endeavour, as a risk taker, investor, and forward-looking buyer of climate solutions.”
Christoph Gebald, co-CEO and co-founder of Climeworks, said: “We are very proud to have established the basis for a unique long-term partnership with the leading risk knowledge company Swiss Re. This is a decisive milestone for the scale-up of Climeworks and the direct air capture industry.”
Swiss Re, Climeworks, Purchase Agreement, Partnership, Climate Change, Insurance, Reinsurance, Christian Mumenthaler, Christoph Gebald, Switzerland