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CHAPTER 27 ENVIRONMENTAL INSURANCE IN THE UK

Insurance Disputes

27

ENVIRONMENTAL INSURANCE IN THE UK

DANIEL LAWRENCE PAUL BOWDEN JONATHAN ISTED

1. INTRODUCTION


Page 777

27.1 In order to address the topic of environmental insurance disputes it is first necessary to consider what is meant by “environmental insurance”. The wide range of potential environment-related liabilities complicates the issue as does the fact that the extent of cover provided under a number of distinctly different types of insurance policies may need to be considered in relation to a particular “environmental” matter. For example, exposure to asbestos as a result of airborne particles of asbestos being inhaled is an environmental as well as a health and safety matter, and depending on issues such as who in particular was exposed (whether an employee or member of the public) and whether the exposure occurred in the workplace or as a consequence of asbestos-containing products having been supplied to third parties, the extent of cover provided under employer liability, public liability and/or product liability insurance policies may need to be considered. Another example is remediation losses associated with contaminated land which may, potentially, be recoverable under public liability, property risk and/or environmental impairment insurance policies, depending on the particular facts surrounding the circumstance or incident that gives rise to the loss and various other factors, such as the type of loss/liability (whether arising from a third party claim in tort or as a result of an administrative enforcement action) and the precise wording of the insurance policies in question.

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