Wednesday, December 31, 2008

'Huge year for natural disasters'

The Sichuan quake was one of
several disasters to strike Asia in 2008

ource: BBC News, December 29, 2008.

"Although there were fewer 'loss-producing events' in 2008 than in the previous year, the impact of natural disasters was higher, said Munich Re in its annual assessment. More than 220,000 people died in events like cyclones, earthquakes and flooding, the most since 2004, the year of the Asian tsunami.

"Meanwhile, overall global losses totalled about $200bn (£137bn), with uninsured losses totalling $45bn, about 50% more than in 2007. This makes 2008 the third most expensive year on record, after 1995, when the Kobe earthquake struck Japan, and 2005, the year of Hurricane Katrina in the US."
The company suggested climate change was boosting the destructive power of disasters like hurricanes and flooding.

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