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Last decade most expensive for natural disasters: Report

LONDON: The last decade was the worst on record for economic losses from natural disasters, amounting to US$3 trillion (2.3 trillion pounds): over a trillion more than the previous decade, insurance broker Aon said on Wednesday (Jan 22).

The Asia-Pacific region was the worst-hit in the 2010 to 2019 period, accounting for 44 per cent of the total, with earthquakes, tsunamis and tropical cyclones among the disasters, Aon said in a report.

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More intense weather events, bigger populations in the path of disasters and greater supply chain disruption in a globalised economy contributed to the sharp rise in economic damage, Aon said.

READ: The 2004 Boxing Day tsunami has enhanced disaster awareness in Aceh, but is this enough?

"Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the last decade of natural disasters was the emergence of previously considered "secondary" perils – such as wildfire, flood, and drought – becoming much more costly," said Steve Bowen, director and meteorologist at Aons impact forecasting team.

"Scientific research indicates that climate change will continue to affect all types of weather phenomena and subsequently impact increasingly urbanised areas."

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