2021’s top 10 costliest global weather disasters cost nations $170 billion

Weather Blog

FILE – In this Sept. 4, 2021 file photo, Aiden Locobon, left, and Rogelio Paredes look through the remnants of their family’s home destroyed by Hurricane Ida in Dulac, La. Louisiana students, who were back in class after a year and a half of COVID-19 disruptions kept many of them at home, are now missing school again after Hurricane Ida. A quarter-million public school students statewide have no school to report to, though top educators are promising a return is, at most, weeks away, not months. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

(KXAN) — The top 10 costliest weather-related disasters in 2021 totaled $170 billion across the world, $20 billion more than 2020 or a 13% increase. This is according to U.K. charity-based Christian Aid in its most recent report.

The group said the costs it estimates are also based only on insured losses, meaning the actual costs of these events may be higher.

The costliest disaster of 2021 across the globe was Hurricane Ida in August, tallying $65 billion in damages. Hurricane Ida was the fifth-strongest hurricane to hit the U.S. mainland with maximum sustained winds of 150 mph at landfall.

Ida went on to spawn flash flooding and tornadoes from Tennessee up to the northeast, including the cities of Philadelphia and New York City.

The second and third costliest disasters were both flood events in Europe and China in July, costing $43 billion and 17.5 billion, respectively.

The major February winter storms that wreaked havoc for not only Central Texas but much of the southern tier of the U.S. cost $23 billion in damages and were responsible for 210 deaths.

Of the top 10 costliest disasters, Asia had the most with four, costing a total of $24.1 billion.

North America accounted for three of the top 10 costliest disasters — the February winter storms and Hurricane Ida. Flooding in British Columbia was the third-costliest North American disaster.

It’s worth noting the two costliest billion-dollar disasters in the U.S. totaled more than the other eight costliest disasters combined.

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