Canadian Underwriter

IBC, Tesera Systems announce transfer agreement for bureau’s Municipal Risk Assessment Tool

March 30, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) has announced the intellectual property rights for its municipal risk assessment tool (MRAT) – a made-in-Canada solution to help communities be more resilient and adaptable to climate change – is being transferred to Tesera Systems Inc.

Flood-helping communities be reslient

Tesera will assume ownership and operation of MRAT effective Apr. 1, IBC reports in a statement Wednesday. The only tool of its kind, MRAT combines “information about municipal infrastructure, current and future climate, and municipal flood damage claims to give communities new, revealing insights into infrastructure vulnerabilities and the risks they face from extreme weather events.”

IBC has retained the professional services of Tesera Systems, an employee-owned consulting services company, to support the design, development, prototyping and piloting of MRAT for use by municipalities across Canada since 2010. “Since then, the MRAT project team has successfully demonstrated the tool’s utility in supporting national efforts to adapt to climate change,” the bureau notes.

IBC reports that Tesera will continue to work with municipalities – in collaboration with IBC and other organizations – leading to a nation-wide launch of MRAT, details around which will be made available in the near future.

“The initial focus of MRAT will be on helping municipalities identify specific risks and vulnerabilities in their sewer and stormwater infrastructure,” IBC notes, adding the tool will help cities prioritize their capital infrastructure investments, adjust service levels and support requests for municipal infrastructure dollars.

Related: Solution to sewer back-up losses not higher premiums and restricted cover, three-city MRAT pilot project launched

“MRAT will help identify the smart infrastructure investments needed today to minimize the risk posed by future severe weather events. By making the right decisions now, MRAT can help build stronger communities for the future,” suggests Tesera president and CEO Bruce MacArthur.

“MRAT will allow communities to more rapidly respond and adapt to the extreme weather events caused by climate change, thereby reducing damage from sewer back-ups and basement flooding, now and in the future,” IBC maintains.

“We recognize that storms and floods are already adding up to significant costs for Canadians; disaster relief spending has increased almost 40-fold in about 40 years,” Sally Turney, IBC’s vice president of communications, points out.

“MRAT has shown local communities that there is an urgent need to build strong infrastructure to withstand changes to the weather,” Turney says, adding that IBC is “collaborating with federal and provincial governments to develop a coordinated, private-public response to the growing national flood problem.”

Related: IBC president and CEO, Don Forgeron, calls for collaborative national flood program