According to a report by British “charity” Oxfam, weather-related disasters, caused by global warming, have quadrupled over the last twenty years reaching a record 500 per year.
“This year we have seen floods in South Asia, across the breadth of Africa and Mexico that have affected more than 250 million people,” Oxfam reports.
“This is no freak year. It follows a pattern of more frequent, more erratic, more unpredictable and more extreme weather events that are affecting more people. The number of people affected by disasters has risen by 68 percent, from an average of 174 million a year between 1985 to 1994 to 254 million a year [4% of world population] between 1995 to 2004. Earlier this year the Asian floods alone affected 248 million people.
“Action is needed now to prepare for more disasters otherwise humanitarian assistance will be overwhelmed and recent advances in human development will go into reverse,” the report says.
“There has been a six-fold increase in floods since 1980. The number of floods and wind-storms has risen from 60 in 1980 to 240 last year. Meanwhile the number of geothermal events, such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, has stayed relatively static.”
Oxfam is urging the UN conference on Climate Change in Bali in December to negotiate a global deal that would assist developing countries against the adverse effects of global warming and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
There are no estimates available yet concerning the carbon footprint for the UN conference on Climate Change in Bali.
Climate Alarm: Disasters increase as climate change bites (pdf 296.8 kb)