According to a new report, the most expensive climate-related disasters in 2022 were droughts, floods and storms.
Christian Aid’s report found that the 10 most costly events in terms of insured loss ranged from $3bn up to $100bn. However, these figures are just estimates and the actual cost could be higher.
These are the 10 worst disasters of the past year.
Hurricane Ian – $100bn
Ian, a Category 4 hurricane, caused extensive damage in western Cuba and the southeast United States. It killed at least 150 people, and left 40,000 homeless over seven days in September.
European drought – $20bn
The summer 2022 drought was widely recognized as the worst in 500 years. It affected food, energy, water availability, and wildlife. It caused wildfires and crop losses, as well as more than 20,000 deaths.
Flooding In China – $12.3bn
June saw the heaviest rainfall in southern China since 1961. This brought floods and landslides, and forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.
China Drought – $8.4bn
Late August saw China experience its hottest, driest summer in history. More than 70 days of extreme heat and low precipitation severely impacted the Yangtze River basin, which is home to more than 450million people and one-third of China’s crop production.
Flooding in Eastern Australia – $7.5bn
The flooding in eastern Australia caused the deaths of 27 people and forced 60,000 to flee their homes. It occurred from February through March. was one example. It received a full month’s worth rain in six hours, while many other towns were still recovering from the record flooding of March.
Pakistan floods – $5.6bn
Flooding caused more than 1,700 deaths and seven million displacements in Pakistan between June and September. It was worse because the flooding occurred after a record-breaking summer of heat, which meant that the ground was too dry to absorb the water.
Storm Eunice $4.3bn
Storm Eunice ravaged the UK, Belgium, Germany and Ireland for five days in February. Seven people were killed.
UK recorded winds of 122 mph, the strongest wind speeds in over 30 years.
Drought in Brazil: $4bn
Brazil has been experiencing drought conditions for the majority of the year. This drought is believed to be the worst in many decades. Particular concern is the low level of Amazon River.
Hurricane Fiona – $3bn
Hurricane Fiona struck the Caribbean and Canada during the latter part of September. It left more than 25 dead and made 13,000 homeless.
At least four international airports were closed, and roads were closed. Many communities were also cut off.
KwaZulu Natal, Eastern Cape Floods, South Africa – $3.0bn
459 people died and more than 40,000 were forced to flee their homes over a week. Durban, South Africa’s busiest port, was also shut down.
The report will rekindle debate over who should pay for a “climate catastrophe”. Many of these disasters are occurring in areas that are least responsible for climate change.
This issue was addressed at the COP27 climate talks in Egypt in November. Countries reached a historic pact for a fund to compensate for climate damage.
However, the details about where and who receives the money are still to be determined.
Patrick Watt, chief executive of Christian Aid, said that the numbers in the report show “the financial costs of inaction on climate crisis”.
He said that the human cost of this spiralling crisis is “visible in the homes destroyed by floods, the deaths of loved ones by storms, and the destruction of livelihoods by drought”.
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