Swiss Re: founding member and head office of the Swiss Climate Foundation

04 July 2008, Zurich

This morning, the Swiss Climate Foundation ('Klimastiftung Schweiz') came into being on the initiative of 11 service providers. The foundation's purpose is the promotion of measures aimed at protecting the climate and enhancing the energy efficiency of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Switzerland. It is financed from reimbursements received by the participating companies in the context of the CO2 levy on fossil fuels. Besides the financial aspect, Swiss Re supports the foundation by heading up the Climate Foundation's offices in Switzerland.

The Swiss Climate Foundation, which evolved from the Zurich Energy Model ("Energie-Modell Zürich"), is a gathering of 11 Swiss companies. Besides Swiss Re, the following firms are involved (listed in alphabetical order): Allianz Schweiz, Bank Pictet, Bank Sarasin, Bank Vontobel, PartnerRe, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Raiffeisen Schweiz Genossenschaft, Swiss Life, Vaudoise Versicherungen and XL Insurance. In doing so, the companies emphasise the importance of sustainability in their respective philosophy. The Climate Foundation is open to other prospective partner companies.

Shared funding

Companies in Switzerland are reimbursed a proportion of the CO2 levy on fossil fuels depending on the size of their payrolls. Member companies of the Swiss Climate Foundation agree to pool these resources and allocate effectively to climate protection and energy efficiency projects. The main beneficiaries will be SMEs, who tend to be hit harder by the CO2 levy than larger commercial enterprises.

As a global reinsurer, Swiss Re adopts a pioneering role in the development of innovative products in the fight against global warming and in adjusting to the inevitable consequences of climate change. The company has been carbon neutral since 2003. Swiss Re's commitment to the cause is further underscored by the appointment of its own Vincent Eckert as CEO of the Swiss Climate Foundation. Peter Forstmoser, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Swiss Re, is convinced of the idea of the Climate Foundation. 'This is a token of the clear commitment of Swiss industry in the fight against climate change. As a global reinsurer, Swiss Re has been playing an active role in environmental protection for a good 20 years now; the Swiss Climate Foundation is another element of this commitment.'

Notes to editors

Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd

Swiss Re is one of the world's leading and most diversified global reinsurers.
The company operates through offices in over 25 countries. Founded in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1863, Swiss Re offers financial services products that enable risk-taking essential to enterprise and progress. The company's traditional reinsurance products and related services for property and casualty, as well as the life and health business are complemented by insurance-based corporate finance solutions and supplementary services for comprehensive risk management. Swiss Re is rated "AA-" by Standard, Poor's, "Aa2" by Moody's and "A+" by A.M. Best.

For further information on the Swiss Climate Foundation, go to