Tlaib, Schiff Introduce Bill to Require Insurance Companies to Disclose Fossil Fuel Investments

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Reps. Rashida Tlaib (MI-12) and Adam Schiff (CA-20) introduced the Polluter Portfolio Disclosure Act, which would require insurance companies with more than $100 million in annual premiums to disclose their investments and underwritings related to coal, oil and gas projects, and fossil fuels. The bill would require these disclosures to be made easily accessible and searchable online so American consumers can easily stay informed.

“As our communities face increasing climate risks, major insurers continue to invest in and underwrite the fossil fuel projects and companies driving the climate crisis,” said Congresswoman Tlaib. “This legislation will empower our residents living with the devastating effects of climate change and fossil fuel development. The American public deserves to know how the insurance industry is bankrolling the climate crisis.”

“Insurance companies like State Farm and Allstate shouldn’t be allowed to profit from the climate crisis while neglecting vulnerable communities,” said Congressman Schiff. “Requiring insurers to publicly disclose their fossil fuel investments will help build transparency and empower people to make informed choices about their coverage. We must act to tackle the climate crisis — and that includes holding insurance companies accountable.”

“Even as insurance companies walk away from vulnerable communities in California and across the country, they continue to insure and invest in the very oil, gas, and coal companies fueling the crisis,” said Carly Fabian, Insurance Policy Advocate at Public Citizen. “Recent estimates show that the insurance industry had over half a trillion in fossil fuel investments in 2019. The Polluter Portfolio Disclosure Act takes a necessary next step by requiring insurers to disclose both fossil fuel investments and underwriting. As insurers recklessly undermine their own markets, transparency on their investment and underwriting practices is crucial to monitor threats to both vulnerable communities and the financial stability of our entire economy.”

“By continuing to invest in fossil fuel companies, major insurance companies are fueling the very climate-intensified extreme weather events they are meant to be insuring against,” said David Shadburn, Senior Government Affairs Advocate at the League of Conservation Voters. “Now we’re seeing some of these same companies refuse to cover some of the people most vulnerable to extreme weather events, especially low-income communities, and communities of color, even as they continue investing in fossil fuels. LCV welcomes the introduction of the Polluter Portfolio Disclosure Act to shine a light on these investments so that customers, investors, and the general public know which insurers are serious about climate financial risks.”

The Polluter Portfolio Disclosure Act would shed light on how big insurance companies are profiting from the climate crisis and, at the same time, failing to provide the necessary coverage to communities in need.

The Polluter Portfolio Disclosure Act is endorsed by the Americans for Financial Reform, California Environmental Voters, Connecticut Citizen Action Group, Consumer Watchdog, Federal Association for Insurance Reform (FAIR), League of Conservation Voters, Public Citizen, Rainforest Action Network, and the Sierra Club. 

This legislation is cosponsored by Kathy Castor (FL-14), Jared Huffman (CA-02), Barbara Lee (CA-12), and Seth Magaziner (RI-02).

The full bill text can be found here.

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