Karen Clark & Co. (KCC), the Boston-based disaster modeling company, has announced the release of version 1.0 of its high-resolution US Wildfire model.
This advanced, fully probabilistic model provides Probability of Exceedance (EP), Maximum Likely Losses (PML), and Average Annual Losses (AAL) curves down to the location level and can be used to develop underwriting strategies and pricing that take into account the impacts of the climate. change, the company said in a statement.
“Climate change has an unequivocal and significant impact on the frequency and severity of forest fires,” said Dr Daniel Bishop, atmospheric scientist at KCC. “The new KCC model captures these impacts and provides a credible view of the potential for future losses. KCC scientists have conducted detailed studies on the correlations between atmospheric variables and area burned in California and other states.
“The most important atmospheric variable is the vapor pressure deficit (VPD) which is the ability of a mass of air to retain moisture beyond what is available in the atmospheric environment,” said Dr. Daniel Ward, Senior Atmosphere Scientist at KCC. “Studies have shown that VPD more accurately predicts total area burned per year than precipitation or temperature alone, and recent KCC analysis shows that an increase in VPD corresponds to an exponential increase in area burned. “
Along with VPD, the KCC Wildfire model takes into account high-resolution data on fuels, topography, wind speed, road density, suppression activities and other factors that influence the speed and direction of the ground. spread of fire. The model also incorporates several important secondary building features and mitigation features.
“Modeling forest fires is a challenge. The model must take into account the constantly changing exposure in the wild urban interface (WUI), the flammability characteristics of different fuels, the likelihood of different wind regimes that favor the spread of fire and the various factors that influence the success of suppression activities, ”explained Dr. Christopher Burke, Principal Investigator at KCC.
Insurers who license the KCC Wildfire model also have access to KCC’s live event process to monitor actual fires as they spread and spread. Insurers can obtain their own real-time, high-resolution loss estimates as events unfold for planning and strategy purposes.
The KCC Wildfire model also includes nine climate change scenarios, reflecting the potential for forest fire loss in the next three years – 2025, 2030 and 2050 – and three of the Group’s Shared Socio-Economic Pathways (SSPs). Intergovernmental Experts on Climate Change (IPCC), as noted in the latest IPCC report.
“Forest fires were previously viewed as a secondary hazard,” said Karen Clark, CEO of KCC. “But the new KCC model shows that insurers could face a loss of more than $ 30 billion from an extreme fire in California, and they should be prepared for losses greater than $ 10 billion with a probability significant based on exposures and climatic conditions today. The risk varies widely by location and thus, in addition to providing PMLs and portfolio metrics, the model can accurately estimate expected loss costs for individual properties so that insurers can price coverage adequately.
“Insurers had started to shy away from wildfire risk because previously they had no credible models for pricing and underwriting exposure,” said Glen Daraskevich, senior vice president of KCC. “We are very pleased to provide the market with a strong and credible view of risk that allows insurers to confidently underwrite business and capitalize on current market opportunities.
About Karen Clark & Co.
Karen Clark & Co. provides advanced models, software and consulting services for a better understanding of disaster risk. KCC’s disaster models currently cover tropical cyclones, extratropical cyclones, severe convection storms, winter storms, forest fires, floods and earthquakes in more than 20 countries.
Source: Karen Clark & Co.
Photograph: Seen in a long exposure photograph, embers light up the hills as the Dixie Fire burns near Milford in Lassen County, Calif. On Tuesday August 17, 2021. Photo credit: TBEN Photo / Noah Berger.
Catastrophe Natural disasters USA Forest fire
Interested in Disaster?
Receive automatic alerts for this topic.