Ken Burgin

How Climate Change Hits Small Business

It’s hard for us in our comfortable big cities to imagine what the people in Townsville (northern Australia) are going through after the massive floods and release of dam water. This inundated the town, and whole shopping centres and business areas are closed – some will never re-open.

But aren’t they insured? The reality is that the level of insurance that could cover this type of flood risk is too expensive for most small operators, even if it is available. Insurance is one of the ‘resented costs’ that operators pay year after year and never make a claim. The ‘1 in 100 year flood risk’ that’s excluded in insurance policies is now more like 1 year in 10. Some experts say Townsville will become uninsurable.

This is climate change hitting small business hard – it’s not about rain forests or the Antarctic, but the cost of being in business is becoming unbearable.

There are a number of parallels to the Brisbane floods of 2011, when I wrote an article on Disaster Recovery Marketing – how to get customers back in the door as quickly as possible. Ironically, it didn’t need much updating to be applicable to this situation.

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