UCL News


UCL in the News: Coast cities 'on brink of natural disasters'

29 June 2007

Coastal cities in the US, Canada, Japan, Indonesia, India and Turkey are teetering on the brink of natural disasters, a meeting at Lloyd's has been told.

The gloomy message was spelt out at an otherwise celebratory event, a presentation to mark the 10th anniversary of Benfield UCL Hazard Research Centre, which has carried out acclaimed research in catastrophe and climate forecasting.

Bill McGuire, director of the centre which is backed by the Benfield broking group and the prestigious London university UCL, said that … climate change was 'the joker in the pack' which meant that at present scientists had 'one hand tied behind their backs' when attempting to predict hazards. …

Malcolm Grant, President and Provost of UCL, said that 10 years ago the notion of a professional sponsorship for university activity was seen as almost mixing with the devil. 'Now we know the two are not chalk and cheese,' he said. 'They work very well together.' The centre had evolved into one of the most important and influential facilities in its field.

Pledging to continue the partnership Grahame Chilton, chief executive of the broking firm, said: 'Benfield recognises the importance of analysing and understanding natural and environmental risks in order to help develop appropriate reinsurance and insurance solutions.' …

'Informa Maritime Trade and Transport'