Liberty International Underwriters (LIU) in Europe, a member of Liberty Mutual Group, has appointed Gordon Smith as new environmental impairment liability (EIL) underwriter in its Madrid office.

At LIU Europe, Smith will be responsible for growing the EIL book in Spain and Portugal as well as supporting the wider development of European EIL business.

The move comes as the Liberty looks to grow its environmental team in Spain and Portugal.

Smith will report to Duncan Spencer, vice-president EIL, and also to LIU Europe’s Madrid office head, Fernando Lara.

Smith was previously an independent environmental consultant, specializing in environmental due diligence, risk assessment and industrial compliance auditing. Smith has 10 years of environmental risk assessment experience in Spain and Portugal, prior to which he worked as a multi-disciplinary environmental consultant in the UK.

Spencer said having launched the new environmental liability unit in 2009 LIU has seen requests for EIL cover steadily increase in the UK and in Europe as the EU Environmental Liability Directive, which requires companies to make financial provision for damage they may cause to the environment, continues to drive demand.

"With Spain having implemented the Directive in 2010, the market in southern Europe has huge growth potential and Gordon’s appointment will be a valuable addition to our EIL team," Spencer said.