A record number of hurricanes, wildfires and floods exacerbated by climate change cost the world $210 billion in damage last year, according to a report by reinsurance company Munich Re.
Damages totaled $95 billion in the U.S., nearly double the losses in 2019. The country experienced a record number of Atlantic hurricanes and the largest wildfires on record in California in 2020, the second-hottest year on record.
Climate change is causing more frequent and intense disasters like storms, heat waves and wildfires, and economic losses are also growing as more people build in disaster-prone areas.
“Natural catastrophe losses in 2020 were significantly higher than in the previous year,” Munich Re board member Torsten Jeworrek said in the report. “Climate change will play an increasing role in all of these hazards. It is time to act.”