Weather disasters hit the world four to five times more often and cause seven times more damage than in the 1970s, according to the United Nations Meteorological Agency. But these disasters are killing far fewer people.
In the 1970s and 1980s, natural disasters killed an average of about 170 people per day worldwide. In the 2010s, that number dropped to about 40 a day, according to the World Meteorological Organization. In its report, the UN has studied more than 11,000 weather disasters over the past half century.
“The good news is that we have minimized the number of casualties despite heat waves, floods, droughts and especially severe tropical storms. Such as Hurricane Ida, it hit Louisiana and Mississippi in the United States, ”WMO Secretary General Petteri Taalas said at a press conference.
“But the bad news is that economic losses are growing very quickly and this will continue,” he added.
In the 1970s, the world experienced an average of about 711 weather disasters per year, but from 2000 to 2009, their number increased to 3,536 (this is almost 10 disasters per day). In compiling the report, the scientists used data from the Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Natural Disasters in Belgium. According to the data, most of the death and destruction in 50 years of weather disasters is caused by storms, floods and droughts.
The five most costly weather disasters since 1970 include storms in the United States, as well as Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The five deadliest weather events have occurred in Africa and Asia, including drought and famine in Ethiopia in the mid-1980s and cyclone Bhola in Bangladesh in 1970.