Arch, AEGIS and Canopius latest to distance themselves from controversial pipeline

Arch Capital Group Ltd, AEGIS London and Canopius have become the latest to rule out providing cover for the controversial East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project.

Their stance follows sustained pressure on Lloyd’s of London managing agents to rule out underwriting EACOP, and follows a protest by Money Rebellion last week, which spilt fake oil outside Arch’s London offices.

In a statement, Arch said: “Arch Capital Group can confirm, on behalf of its underwriting operations, that it has not and will not issue any insurance policies covering the East African Crude Oil Pipeline.”

In the same week, AEGIS London also ruled out the controversial project as it confirmed that the project doesn’t meet its ESG policy. 

A spokesman for Canopius added: “Canopius can confirm that we have no involvement, or plans to be involved with the insurance of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline.”

According to campaign group Coal Action Network, the total number of insurers ruling out EACOP now stands at 21. 

The East Africa Crude Oil pipeline, or EACOP, is a 1,443 kilometre pipeline planned for Uganda and Tanzania. According to Coal Action Network, it threatens to displace thousands of families and farmers from their land, severely degrade critical water resources and wetlands in both Uganda and Tanzania, and cross numerous sensitive biodiversity hotspots. 

The group also suggested that the oil transported via the pipeline would generate 34 million tons of carbon emissions each year

Omar Elmawi, coordinator of #StopEACOP Coalition said: “The number of banks (24) and (re)insurers staying away from EACOP is a clear indication that this pipeline and the associated oil fields will cause huge impacts to people, nature and climate if allowed to proceed. Supporting this project is supporting human rights violations and a carbon bomb that will be impossible to diffuse once it goes ahead.”

Rafela FitzHugh from Money Rebellion added “We’re happy with Arch and AEGIS’ announcements, but people shouldn’t still have to push for change. With deadly weather destroying lives across the world, the insurance sector should be turning its back on all new fossil fuel projects now.”

“Citizens resisting the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline in Uganda and Tanzania, are facing arrest and human rights abuses.”

The group added that it has written to Chaucer  to tell it “to expect us on its door step soon if it doesn’t rule out insuring EACOP”.

Chaucer was not immediately available for comment.