Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. 24/7 Space News .

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

Earth Kills 250,000 People A Year

Natural disasters claim globally nearly 250,000 lives every year. Weather- and climate-related disasters were responsible for 90 percent of those deaths in the 1990s with another 200 million people effected each year by natural disasters - seven times the number of persons affected by armed conflict. The global annual costs for property damage lay between 50 to 100 billion US dollars. Asia has been the continent most frequently hit by hydro- meteorological disasters, accounting for 43 per cent of the total number of events and 80 per cent of the people killed during the last decade.
Geneva - Mar 23, 2002
Global statistics continue to highlight an increasing number of people who are affected by weather- and climate- related disasters while records show a corresponding increase in the number of such hazards, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) on the occasion of Friday's World Meteorological Day.

"This worrying trend is counterproductive to a sustainable way of life for all world populations", says WMO Secretary General Prof. Godwin O. P. Obasi.

Natural disasters claim globally nearly 250,000 lives every year and for example over the decade 1991-2000, more than 90 percent were killed by weather- and climate-related disasters. Over the period, the events affected more than 200 million persons per year, which is seven times the number of persons affected by armed conflict.

The global annual costs for property damage lay between 50 to 100 billion US dollars. Asia has been the continent most frequently hit by hydro- meteorological disasters, accounting for 43 per cent of the total number of events and 80 per cent of the people killed during last decade.

With the theme for World Meteorological Day 2002, "Reducing vulnerability to weather and climate extremes", WMO wishes to draw special attention to the devastating impact of weather- and climate- related disasters, the increased vulnerability of humankind and the need for better response mechanisms; assessments of such vulnerability depend on the availability of climate data.

Prof. Obasi: "In the onger term, sustainable development will be determined to a large extent by projected climate change and its impact on sea-level rise, agriculture and water resources and associated natural disasters.

It is projected, for example, that climate change will lead to an intensification of the water cycle, causing increased droughts in some places and floods in others."

While well-established communities have built up their infrastructures and prospered within a general pattern of local climate to which they have adapted, extreme events with intensities outside this range can cause catastrophic failure in environmental, economic and social terms.

Severe thunderstorms with related phenomena such as tornadoes, lightning, hailstorms, strong winds, dust- and sandstorms, waterspouts and downpours can be short-lived but extremely violent.

Other phenomena and associated events that are responsible for loss of life and property damage include tropical and mid-latitude cyclones, monsoons, heat waves, cold spells, blizzards and El Nino/La Nina.

The consensus among meteorologists that the odds of a new El Nino event occurring this year are higher than they have been since the El Nino of 1997/98, is broadly based upon increasingly accurate seasonal predictions which are prerequisite for preparations and effective action in good time.

There is some evidence that the signal of El Nino events can be seen in the rainfall and temperature records across southern Europe or the reported recent flooding in Ecuador and Peru, but there are no data yet allowing the formulation of views on the likely intensity of an El Nino, should one develop.

"We are very aware of the fact that we do not automatically benefit by progress in science. It depends on how we use the resulting knowledge and tools", adds Prof. Obasi.

"Through WMO, there is a global availability of real- and near-real-time weather and climate information, which is essential for vulnerability assessment, developing natural disaster reduction strategies and early warnings.

WMO's commitment is to translate all of these advances in sciences and technology into useful products for the safety and well being of society."

Related Links
World Meteorological Organization
Search SpaceDaily
Subscribe To SpaceDaily Express

The Economic Impacts Of An El Nino
 Washington - Mar 18, 2002
NOAA has the primary responsibility within the federal government to routinely provide climate forecasts and products to the nation. Most parts of NOAA are in some way involved in El Nino research, monitoring and prediction.

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly

paypal only

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2016 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.