A new analysis by WMO published on May 22, 2023, stated that 138,377 Indians died between 1970 and 2021 in 573 climate-related disasters
Close to 150,000 Indians have died in the past 51 years because of extreme weather, says a new World Meteorological Organization (WMO) report.
A new analysis by WMO published on May 22, 2023, stated that 138,377 Indians died between 1970 and 2021 in 573 climate-related disasters. This is the second-highest number in Asia after Bangladesh.
More than 5 lakh Bangladeshis have died due to 281 events in these 51 years. Myanmar recorded the third-highest number of human casualties in Asia, mostly to the 2008 Cyclone Nargis which struck its Irrawaddy delta region and killed 138,366.
China had the fourth-highest number of casualties — 88,457 due to 740 events. Almost a quarter of deaths resulted from a flood in 1975.
These numbers were part of updated data in the WMO’s Atlas of Mortality and Economic Losses from Weather, Climate and Water-related hazards. The figures were released as a part of the World Meteorological Congress, which started its quadrennial session on May 22, 2023.
The main agenda of this year’s World Meteorological Congress is to ensure that everyone in the world is protected by early warning systems by the end of 2027.
The WMO also revealed that extreme weather, climate and water-related events caused 11,778 reported disasters between 1970 and 2021. These accounted for just over 2 million deaths and $4.3 trillion in economic losses.
Over 90 per cent of the death toll was recorded in developing countries. Asia reported 3,612 disasters attributed to weather, climate and water extremes, The highest in the world. It also recorded 984,263 deaths, which is 47 per cent of all deaths worldwide, with tropical cyclones being the leading cause of reported deaths.
These disasters cost the continent $ 1.4 trillion in economic losses. North America, Central America and the Caribbean reported the second-highest number of extreme weather events (2,107) which resulted in 77, 454 deaths and $2 trillion in economic losses.
Africa (1,839 disasters), Europe (1,784 disasters), South-West Pacific (1,493 disasters) and South America (943 disasters) made up the rest of the list. Most of the reported economic losses were attributed to storm-related disasters, and more specifically, to tropical cyclones.
While droughts caused 95 per cent of African deaths, extreme temperatures were the leading cause of reported deaths in Europe. The report also mentioned that the mortality rates had fallen thanks to early warning systems. So, ensuring everyone has access to early warning systems is imperative to better adaptation against extreme weather events.
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