Closing the gap: Why UK clients need to think about environmental coverage

It has now been 15 years since the Environmental Liability Directive (ELD) came into force across the EU. The directive enforces the so-called “polluter-pays principle” and requires an operator to make good the environmental damage they have caused – whether that was deliberate or accidental. The ELD also requires operators to take measures to prevent damage to water, land and/or protected species if there is a threat of it occurring.

While on the increase over the past 15 years since the ELD came into force, the take-up of specialist environmental liability insurance in the UK still remains fairly low, leaving many business owners / operators who have legitimate environmental exposures uninsured. There is, we believe, a compelling reason for this: companies simply are not aware of the potential liabilities they face.

This article highlights the limitations of general liability policies and how UK companies can mitigate their exposure by taking out specialist environmental liability cover.