Storm Isaias in Annapolis, Maryland on August 4, 2020. -

Baltimore Sun / TNS / Sipa USA / SIPA

Extreme weather events have caused the death of nearly half a million people over the past twenty years, the NGO GermanWatch revealed in a report published on Monday.

Storms, floods or heatwaves ... The poorest countries pay the heaviest human price of these events recorded between 2000 and 2019. Puerto Rico, Burma and Haiti were thus the most affected countries in this record which records nearly 480,000 deaths caused by more than 11,000 extreme weather events.

The account is not there

As the first Climate Adaptation Summit, organized by the Netherlands begins Monday, this global index of climate risks, published each year, also estimates that these disasters have cost 2.560 billion dollars since the turn of the century.

With the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to the impacts of climate change is one of the pillars of the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit warming to significantly below + 2 ° C compared to the era pre-industrial, even + 1.5 ° C.

As the effects of global warming are increasingly felt, rich countries had promised to increase their climate assistance to developing countries to $ 100 billion per year from 2020, but the count is not there. always not.

Devastating effects for poor countries

Germanwatch's report specifically looked at the impacts of the 2019 storm season, with hurricanes and cyclones partially ravaging the Caribbean, East Africa and South Asia.

"Poor countries are more affected because they are more vulnerable to the devastating effects of hazards and have weaker capacities to overcome them", commented Vera Keunzel, one of the authors of the report.

So, for example, countries like Haiti, the Philippines or Pakistan are hit so often by climatic disasters that they do not have time to fully recover before the next one, she noted.

In a report published in mid-January, the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) denounced the clearly insufficient funds devoted to adaptation measures worldwide.


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