January 6, 2020

Climate change. Is there a hotter - pardon the pun - topic in catastrophe risk at the moment? New companies and consultancies are popping up offering advice and guidance on how to cope with this topic that has escalated in boardrooms greatly in the past few years.

Here's a few thoughts of mine around the topic on how catastrophe risk might pan out in the next 2, 5, 10 years. They're just opinions, so you're more t...

November 18, 2019

I've spoken (probably way too much) about the work I've been doing looking into climate model simulations of our present-day climate through the lens of windstorm losses. One of the main things I've unexpectedly learnt from this is how perilous it might be to make inferences about climate trends from historical data alone.

The example below provides simply some thoughts on the topic: I'm not saying I'm right o...

September 29, 2019

A couple of years ago I wrote a blog post wondering how easy it might be to propel a hurricane into Europe, based on extremes of sea surface temperature and tropical cyclone forward speeds. Not long after this, Hurricane Ophelia came within 12 hours of landfall from Ireland as a tropical system.

Two years on, there is the potential of another system - Lorenzo - anomalous in its intensity and location for this time...

January 8, 2019

I am taking a real long-shot here: Could we use the ever-improving world of seasonal forecasting to help re-jig the timings of our reinsurance contracts? I am probably howling at the moon, but at least allow me to explain.

Please follow the link here to the Simplitium Blog to find out more.

October 2, 2018

Confession corner: I am a frustrated weather forecaster. It was my career aim that led me into studying meteorology at University before I moved into the world of research and then into the research and building of catastrophe models. Working in catastrophe modelling for a while now has made me realise how similar, despite different time horizons, weather forecasting and catastrophe modelling can be. Let me try to...

May 19, 2018

I finally got round to reading Roger Pielke Jnr's book The Rightful Place of Science: Disasters and Climate Change. It's an illuminating read on climate change and its relationship to the perceived increase of extreme events - and also, disappointingly, how Pielke has been treated by fellow scientists for thinking differently from the crowd. I think there is a tendency to align climate change with “every hazard is...

January 6, 2018

For the more "mature" perils where models are 15,20,25 years old there is plenty that we have learnt from academia that, iteratively, has fed into the models and improved them. Add to this the growth of better reporting and recording of loss data to help improve these models and more and more academics moving into the growing world of catastrophe modelling, our models are better than ever: but what can we do to in...

December 15, 2017

As the 2017 hurricane season comes to a close we can obviously look back at landfalling droughts ended and records broken. But what can we take from this year's Atlantic Hurricane season and its associated systems forward into how we think about hurricane risk and how we might improve on modelling it? Here are a few points that have sprung to mind this season. It's purely a point of view, but hopefully something t...

October 12, 2017

Thirty years ago, a large mass of cloud moved north-east towards the shores of NW France and SE England: the infamous, poorly-forecast, October Storm. Thirty years on, Hurricane Ophelia sits close to the Azores ready to move north-east possibly towards the NW Europe. Two very different storms, but both are connected by the low risk but considerable potential that exists in the overlapping of the tropical and...

September 7, 2017

Irma is breaking records all over the place and leaving near-total damage in its wake: but I will leave that for others to discuss. As Irma heads towards the US Coastline, I wanted to post a short note on the uncertainty that seems to have dragged on in last 2-3 days around just what might be in store plus another couple of aspects of the storm that give maybe some context to the bigger picture of hurricane activi...

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