Floods, storms, droughts, heat waves and weather-spawned disasters are becoming more frequent day by day. A UN report reveals that ninety per cent of the major disasters in the last 20 years globally have been caused by weather-related events.
The report titled “The Human Cost of Weather-Related Disasters” says that since 1995, more than 606,000 lives have been lost and 4.1 billion people were affected by disasters associated with weather.
During last 20 years, around 6,457 weather-related disasters were recorded. Of this, 95 percent of the people were from Asia. This continent accounts for the "lion's share of disaster impacts". The tally of worst affected countries includes USA with 472, China with 441, India with 288, the Philippines with 274 and Indonesia with 163.
Cyclone Nargis, which struck Myanmar in 2008, alone raised the death toll to 138,000 in Asia. The ferocity and frequency of weather-related disasters across the world are now greater than ever before.
Tropical storms including cyclones, hurricanes and tornadoes are the most deadly disasters, which reportedly claimed more than 242,000 people in the aforementioned time period. About 89 per cent of these deaths occurred in the lower-income group countries.
Extreme temperatures claim about 164,000 lives and of this heat waves account for 148,000 lives. Surprisingly, 92 per cent of the deaths occurred in high-income countries. The worst drought affected continent is Africa, which has witnessed 136 events during last 20 years.
Climate and weather are the major drivers of disasters across the globe and this report shows us the actual price the world is paying.
Image credit - theatlantic.com