Over the past 50 years, extreme weather has cost USD4 trillion and resulted in two million deaths.


The effects of extreme weather have been devastating over the last 50 years, resulting in two million deaths and USD4 trillion (in economic losses) between the years 1970 and 2019. This is according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which has revealed that climate- and weather-related disasters, such as storms, floods, heatwaves, and droughts, have become more frequent and intense in recent decades due to global warming.

According to the data, there were 7,348 reported extreme weather events between 1970 and 2019; these were responsible for two million deaths, displacement of 4.2 billion people, and an estimated USD4 trillion in losses. The figure of USD4 trillion is particularly striking, considering that in 1970, the world’s total GDP was just USD9 trillion. This means that the cost of extreme weather-related disasters in the last 50 years is equal to more than 44% of the global economy at that time.

The cost of these disasters is expected to continue to climbers as the climate crisis worsens. Earlier this year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that without “urgent and ambitious” efforts to reduce emissions, by 2050, the global average annual economic losses due to climate-related disasters could