26 August 2022
Adani continues to face difficulties managing insurance coverage for its climate-wrecking Carmichael thermal coal project.
Would-be insurance broker Lockton has revealed to Market Forces that it never signed the letter of appointment it was sent by Adani Australia, and that it will never work for the Carmichael mine.
Lockton has also confirmed in writing to clients and its own staff that it is not working for Adani Australia. But Lockton has so far refused to put in writing its commitment to never be involved with Adani Australia.
In early June, the #StopAdani campaign received information indicating that Lockton Companies had been sent a letter of appointment by Adani Australia, making it the insurance broker of record for Adani’s Carmichael thermal coal project.
Market Forces immediately reached out to Lockton to give it the opportunity to confirm or deny its involvement with Adani, but we were ignored.
Other evidence also suggested Lockton could be involved with the project. Marsh, Adani’s long-standing insurance broker, confirmed it was no longer working for Adani Carmichael. Additionally, the insider tip-off pointed to a relationship between Adani Australia’s Group Insurance Manager, Brad Green, and Lockton. According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr Green is a former Lockton employee. Mr Green’s LinkedIn profile now indicates he has left his role with Adani.
Due to Lockton’s refusal to engage and confirm or deny the appointment, Market Forces and its allies in the #StopAdani movement launched a campaign, which included six weeks of emails, phone calls, actions outside Lockton’s London office and concerned inquiries by clients.
On the eve of a planned protest outside its Sydney offices in late July, a senior Lockton staff member confirmed via a phone call with a #StopAdani volunteer that it was not involved with the Carmichael project and would not get involved in the future.
In a separate phone conversation that same day, the senior Lockton employee told a Market Forces campaigner Adani’s letter of appointment was never signed by Lockton.
Lockton has subsequently confirmed in writing to a number of its clients and staff members that it is not brokering insurance for Adani Carmichael.
Lockton’s next step must be to formalise its stated commitment to never be involved in Adani’s disastrous project via a written statement or a broader coal and energy policy.
Ongoing insurance difficulties
Adani is facing difficulties in securing insurance. Forty-four of the world’s biggest insurance companies are refusing to provide coverage for Carmichael.
When Adani turned to the Lloyd’s of London insurance market, outreach by Market Forces and others in the #StopAdani Alliance succeeded in convincing 28 Lloyd’s syndicates, including at least five existing Carmichael insurers and the 10 biggest market players, to commit to providing no further insurance.
In May 2021, Carmichael rail line construction contractor BMD admitted it had searched the world for insurance and had been unable to find essential coverage specifically for its work for Carmichael. Adani had to take on its risk.
In a further indication of Adani’s insurance problems, the head of Adani Australia, Lucas Dow, was in the media in the lead up to this year’s Federal Election, asking for the Australian taxpayer to prop-up a coal miner self-insurance scheme.
To have any chance of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees, all new coal mines must be stopped.
Any insurer, reinsurer and insurance broker willing to support Adani’s destructive Carmichael project is undermining global efforts on climate and taking serious risks with its reputation.