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The High Price of Natural Disasters: $329 Billion in 2021

February 2, 2022 Leave a comment DRI Admin

Natural and climate-related disasters cost the world hundreds of billions – even though there were fewer major catastrophes to count than previous years.

Aon plc’s annual Weather, Climate and Catastrophe Insight Report looks at the frequency and severity of natural disasters and the resulting costs, and found that out of the $343 billion in losses for 2021, $329 billion resulted from weather/climate events. This makes 2021 the third costliest year on record.

Most notable is the number of events (401) had slightly decreased compared to other years, which only drives home that it’s not the number of disasters – it’s the severity. And based on those economic costs, the severity is growing every year.

Another issue of concern: only 38% of the losses last year were covered by insurance, highlighting a gap in both protection and innovation regarding climate risk.

Other key findings:

  • The Haiti earthquake was the deadliest event of 2021, with 2,248 recorded fatalities
  • Of the insured losses, 71% were in the U.S.
  • There were 50 instances of billion-dollar events – the fourth highest year on record
  • July’s floods were the costliest disaster for Europe at $46 billion
  • Wildfires have increased in prominence throughout the year, making the term “fire season” increasingly outdated

Click here to download the report.

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