Climate Change: How much did natural disasters cost in 2021?

Ground Report | New Delhi: How much did natural disasters cost in 2021; 343 billion dollars was the total of direct economic losses and physical damages derived from natural disasters registered in 2021, the majority due to climate change, Aon plc has said in its latest report.

Highest volume of losses

In its report ‘Weather, Climate and Catastrophes 2021‘, the consulting firm Aon puts the economic thermometer on the natural disasters registered in the world during the last year and draws a clear conclusion: the cost derived from meteorological phenomena amounted to 329,000 million dollars . a fact that makes 2021 the third year recorded with the highest volume of losses.

If the total of direct economic losses and physical damages of all-natural catastrophes is valued —not only those related to meteorology—, the amount is around 343,000 million dollars. The floods alone generated, according to Aon’s calculations, 105,000 million in losses, which places them as the most serious catastrophes, followed by tropical cyclones, with 92,000 million. The different episodes of extreme weather generated losses of around 96,000 million euros, drought 21,000, forest fires 13,000 and earthquakes 12,000.

Perhaps not all of them can be directly related to the effects of pollution, but the authors of the report do not hesitate to warn of its weight. “Extreme weather events, some fueled by climate change, were especially notable in the US, battering the country’s forests. “Record hot and dry conditions set the stage for wildfires that resulted in a multimillion-dollar annual loss.

Through its report “Weather, climate and disaster information for 2021″, the consultancy revealed that spending on weather events alone amounted to 329 billion dollars last year. Adding direct economic losses and physical damage increases the missing 14 billion.

For the consultant, “the influence of climate change is especially evident” in some of the natural disasters, mainly in tropical cyclones and extreme precipitation.

The danger influenced by climate change becomes increasingly volatile and serious. The expansion of humanity’s footprints also increases the risk of costlier disasters, the study argues.

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2021 is the seventh costliest year on Aon’s record, down from 2011 at a loss of $625 billion and 2017 at a cost of $537 billion.

How much did natural disasters cost in 2021?

  • Floods: 105 billion dollars.
  • Tropical cyclones: 92 billion dollars.
  • Extreme weather: 58 billion dollars.
  • Cold: 38 billion dollars.
  • Drought: 21 billion dollars.
  • Forest fires: 13 billion dollars.
  • Earthquakes: 12 billion dollars.
  • Wind storms in the European Union: 2,000 million dollars.
  • Others: 2 billion dollars.

Aon points out that so far in the 21st century, tropical cyclones are the events that have meant the most economic losses. Likewise, he expresses that the United States has been the country hardest hit by the effects of climate change.

“The 2021 disaster statistics are surprising because some of the extreme weather events are the kind that is likely to become more frequent or severe as a result of climate change. Among these are strong storms in the United States, even in the winter semester, or heavy rains followed by floods in Europe. For hurricanes, scientists anticipate that the proportion of severe storms and storms with extreme precipitation will increase due to climate change,” says Ernst Rauch of Munich Re.

And he concludes, as a warning to sailors: “Although the facts cannot be automatically attributed to climate change, the analysis of changes over decades provides plausible indications of a connection with the warming of the atmosphere or the oceans”.

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