climate change

The risks

Climate change is the most important issue facing humanity in the twenty first century and it will change the way in which all of us live and work.

Climate change poses enormous risks for businesses, governments and NGOs, as well as commercial opportunities for those strategically placed to take advantage of them.

shipwreck on land, thanks to floods of Katrina

Climate change risks will affect

  • Planning, infrastructure development and asset management especially in low-income countries

  • Regulatory and operating costs which need to be factored in during profit and loss accounting

  • The economic life of engineering infrastructure

  • The political, social and economic context within which commercial decisions are made

  • Due diligence and professional indemnity for business

  • Competitive risks

  • Commercial activity


For more information on climate change science, see the IPCC 5th Assessment Reports

The science

Human emissions of greenhouse gases such as CO2 are warming the atmosphere, land and oceans by slowing the escape of radiation to space.

Most of the radiation imbalance (over 90%) is warming the oceans, and producing much of the global sea level rise that is occurring. The rest is warming the atmosphere and melting land and sea ice.

A better understanding

The science behind the greenhouse effect was largely developed during the 19th century and scientists are now trying to better understand climate change impacts by asking questions such as:

  • How quickly will glaciers melt

  • How quickly will sea levels rise

  • What will be the effect on ecosystems

  • How will climate change affect flooding

enormous consequences

Climate change means that 16 of the warmest years on record have all occurred since 2000, at a time when atmospheric CO2 concentrations are at their highest level for at least 1 million years.

International climate agreements have aimed to keep future atmospheric warming to below 1.5 - 2°C above pre-industrial temperatures, where “dangerous climate change” can be expected.
Given current and probable future emissions, this target is very likely to be missed and projections suggest that the earth will warm by perhaps 4 - 6°C by 2100 with enormous consequences for human societies and ecosystems.

Extreme floods are increasing in size frequency and droughts are becoming more severe.

The three hottest years ever recorded were 2016, 2015 and 2014.

Vulnerable ecosystems are struggling to cope with the rapidity of these changes.

You can trust CCRM

CCRM works with governments and NGOs, insurance companies, engineering consultancies and commercial organisations.