May 20, 2024

Survey: Extreme weather will be top business concern by 2030

Businesses are more concerned about extreme weather affecting operations in 2030 than cyber-attacks, according to a survey conducted by Healix.

The risk management provider partnered with Censuswide to survey 500 risk managers, senior security managers and travel risk managers at mid-sized businesses across multiple industries from finance and professional services to higher education and technology.

Almost half (43%) of respondents cited extreme weather as the risk they are most concerned about, followed by cyber-attacks (40%) and interstate conflict (38%).

The survey highlighted that 73% of business operators had been directly affected by extreme weather. Manufacturing was the most impacted industry at 86%, with the media sector in second place at 83%.

It found 41% of businesses were most concerned about extreme heat affecting employees. Heavy rainfall and flooding were next with 37%, followed by wildfires at 33%.

Natural disasters were thought to have the most impact on operations (34%), ahead of societal or cultural (30%). Despite this, a quarter (25%) of respondents had no plan to mitigate risk around climate or sustainability. 

Andrew Devereux, Risk Intelligence Manager at Healix, said: “With consistent reports of wildfires and flooding over the last 12 months, from the wildfires of Hawaii and Canada, to the 50-degree Celsius temperatures in South America and the flooding in China, it comes as no surprise that our survey shows businesses are most concerned about the impact of extreme weather.   

“It is concerning to see so many respondents with no plan in place to manage climate-related risk. The hard truth is that we’re experiencing more immediate physical and direct operational impact from changing climate patterns. It is crucial that businesses think about climate risk in the same short-term view they have for cultural or societal risk, such as political unrest.”