One the US's problems is the huge amount of middle-class entitlements, and here is another one. Reinsurance rates have gone up after New Zealand, and these people want to cut down the costs. What better way than to stick all the risk on the feds? It's difficult to figure out, but I guess the feds must pay if there is an earthquake, since they are 'backing' it. Nobody takes out earthquake insurance in California, since they assume the feds will pay for everything, anyway.
Remember, if you are on a swamp, like all of Christchurch, then get earthquake insurance!