The company that started providing businesses, and later private individuals, with green insurance has added more arrows to its quiver of green products.
Fireman’s Fund has announced, first, a 5% discount for Energy Star buildings; buildings holding Energy Star classifications generally use 35% less energy and produce 35% lower carbon dioxide emissions than common buildings.
Second is Green Financial Initiative Coverage, which “provides protection for incentives impacting taxes, utilities, loans, and more related to green installations or upgrades. In the event of a loss, Fireman’s Fund will cover any losses for two calendar years.”
When we first wrote about Fireman’s Fund offering green insurance products in the U.S. (see “It’s Now Easier Being Green,” IA, September 2008), there were only about 500 buildings certified as green under the Green Building Initiative (see www.thegbi.org for more information). Now there are more than 10,000 Energy Star buildings (different system, similar principles), with more on the way.
Fireman’s Fund began its green insurance initiative with Green-Gard commercial building coverage in 2006. This allowed business owners to replace standard systems, such as power generation, water, and roofing, with green products in the event of a loss. Customers who already had green systems in place were also covered for replacement, and if the building was a total loss, Green-Gard allowed it to be rebuilt green-certified, which in the long run saves considerable resources. Currently there are approximately 1,500 policies in force with Green-Gard endorsements, according to the company.
Auto, Home, Commercial Buildings
The company’s green commercial auto coverage, launched in 2008, was augmented by private coverage in 2009. Policyholders opting for the hybrid auto upgrade are covered for the first three years of the vehicle’s life for replacement by a hybrid model or its equivalent; those purchasing the new vehicle replacement coverage will be able to buy a new hybrid vehicle to replace the one they already drive, in case of total loss, for the first three model years, with a five-year option available. This is instead of the actual cash value–the cost of the vehicle minus depreciation–offered by most policies. These policies are not available in all states.