UN report: U.S. has highest number of weather related disasters in the world

This satellite image taken Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015 at 9:37 a.m. EDT. (NOAA via AP)

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – While leaders from around the world meet in Paris to begin talks on curbing climate change, a UN report finds that weather-related disasters have nearly doubled over the past twenty years. Released last week, the report, titled The Human Cost of Weather Related Disasters, looks at the human cost of weather-related disasters around the world, and some of the numbers are staggering.

The world averages 335 weather disasters a year, nearly 1 a day. That number is up 14% from a decade ago and nearly 50% from two decades ago. Asia was the hardest hit region, but the U.S. topped the list of countries with the most weather disasters at nearly 500 over the last 20 years.

The cost to life and property has been astounding too: over 600,000 have died worldwide since 1995 with over $300 billion in damage reported every year due to weather disasters.

Scientists aren’t sure how much of this is due to climate change, but recent science has been able to tie some extreme weather events to climate change. These extreme events are expected to continue climbing in number over the coming decades and will likely keep negatively impacting us.

Leaders from 190 countries will continue climate talks at the Paris Climate Conference through December 11. The goal: creating a universal and legally binding agreement on climate change, the first of its kind.


For more on the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, click here.


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