Climate change and increasingly extreme weather events, have caused a surge in natural disasters over the past 50 years disproportionately impacting poorer countries, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) said.
There were more than 11,000 reported disasters attributed to these hazards globally, with just over two million deaths and $3.64 trillion in losses. More than 91 per cent of the deaths occurred in developing countries.
“Economic losses are mounting as exposure increases. But, behind the stark statistics, lies a message of hope. Improved multi-hazard early warning systems have led to a significant reduction in mortality. Quite simply, we are better than ever before at saving lives”, said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
Only half of WMO’s 193 member countries have multi-hazard early warning systems and severe gaps in weather and hydrological observing networks exist in Africa, some parts of Latin America and in Pacific and Caribbean island States, the report warns. More