BERLIN (dpa-AFX) - The German Association of Cities is calling for more insurance cover against natural hazards. "Extreme weather events are increasing and coming at an ever faster pace," the association said on Friday. The fact that the federal and state governments were unable to agree on a line on Thursday evening was not good news.

The federal states had demanded compulsory insurance against natural hazards for homeowners. According to Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), however, the federal government only wants to oblige insurers to offer such home insurance policies with a natural hazard component.

The obligation to offer is a good option, said the President of the Association of Cities and Towns, Münster's Lord Mayor Markus Lewe. "Then customers would have to actively choose if they don't want natural hazard insurance." Lewe added: "However, no solution at all is the worst solution, and the talks on this must now continue."

Insurers also prefer the mandatory offer as a compromise. The German Insurance Association expressed regret that no agreement was reached on Thursday. However, the association emphasized that it remains important to make progress on prevention and climate impact adaptation.

Federal Environment Minister Steffi Lemke (Greens) said that the heavy rainfall events of recent weeks showed how important it is to take better precautions in view of the risks of the climate crisis. "Protection against natural hazards must become the standard in risk areas."/bf/DP/mis