The UN said that there has been a ‘staggering’ rise in natural disasters in the last 20 years thanks to the climate crisis, which could turn the world into an uninhabitable hell. According to the scientists, the sharp increase in natural disasters and their frequency is due to rising global temperatures. “It is baffling that we willingly and knowingly continue to sow the seeds of our own destruction,” UNDRR chief Mami Mizutori and Debarati Guha-Sapir of Belgium's Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters told CNN.
Researchers said political and business leaders have failed to take meaningful action to alleviate the impact of climatic change. Between 2000 and 2019, there were 7,348 major natural disasters -- including earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes — that claimed 1.23 million lives, affected 4.2 billion people and resulted in US$2.97 trillion in global economic losses, according to the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR).
Asia was the worst hit from climate disasters in the last 20 years, with 3068 natural disasters from 2000-2019. Reports of extreme weather conditions and disaster events have increased in frequency, the report by UNDRR reads.
“It really is all about governance if we want to deliver this planet from the scourge of poverty, further loss of species and biodiversity, the explosion of urban risk and the worst consequences of global warming,” Guha Sapir said. Over the past two decades, China alone has experienced more than 500 natural disasters and the US, about 467 natural disasters.
Deadliest among them have been the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, the 2008 Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar, and the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
According to the report, greenhouse gas emissions will need to be reduced by at least 7.2 per cent every year in the next 10 years to reduce temperatures by 1.5 degrees, the target agreed in Paris. “We have seen little progress on reducing climate disruption and environmental degradation,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres.