$72m April Storm Shows Need For Adaptation

The April storm that swept New Zealand and cut power for days for thousands of Aucklanders has resulted in more than 13,000 claims costing more than $72m, the Insurance Council of New Zealand reported today.

“The 10 and 11 April storm has been the most expensive so far this year and has cost more than cyclones Gita and Fehi combined,” said Insurance Council chief executive Tim Grafton in a media release.

“Last year was the most expensive year on record for severe weather events with $243 million in insured losses.  This storm brings the total for this year to $173.1 million and we are only in May and still have the late-April floods to calculate so it is not hard to imagine this year being another big one,” he said.

With more and more extreme weather events being felt by the country, the Insurance Council welcomes the release of the Climate Change Adaptation Technical Working Group’s recommendations Adapting to Climate Change in New Zealand.

“Every dollar spent on adaptation now will be more than repaid in future savings. The longer we wait to adapt, the more it will cost us and if we fail to adapt altogether it will cost us the most.”

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