UN Report Reveals Devastating Human Toll of Disasters in 'Hottest Year On Record'
A new analysis issued today by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) shows that 2015 - the hottest year on record - confirmed that weather and climate-related disasters now dominate disaster trends linked to natural hazards.
The analysis found that 98.6 million people were affected by disasters in 2015, and that climate - often aided by a strong El Niño phenomenon - was a factor in 92 per cent of those events. The disasters having the greatest impact were the 32 major droughts recorded throughout the year, which amounted to more than double the 10-year annual average and affected 50.5 million people.
"The main message from this trends analysis is that reducing greenhouse gases and adapting to climate change is vital for countries seeking to reduce disaster risk now and in the future, said Robert Glasser, the Secretary-General's Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction and head of UNISDR, in a press statement.