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Extreme weather

BD among 10 countries most affected

By UNB, DHAKA
14th-Nov-2017       
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Bangladesh is among the 10 most affected countries in the period of 1997-2016 due to extreme weather events with its 6th position, says a global report.
Honduras, Haiti and Myanmar were identified as the most affected countries in this 20-year period. They are followed by Nicaragua, the Philippines and Bangladesh, said the Global Climate Risk Index 2018 that analysed to what extent countries have been affected by the impacts of weather-related loss events (storms, floods, heat waves).
The most recent data available - for 2016 and from 1997 to 2016 - were taken into account, according to the report a copy of which UNB obtained. Altogether, more than 524 000 people died as a direct result of more than 11 000 extreme weather events; and losses between 1997 and 2016 amounted to around US$ 3.16 trillion (in Purchasing Power Parities). The countries affected most in 2016 were Haiti, Zimbabwe as well as Fiji and for the period from 1997 to 2016 Honduras, Haiti and Myanmar rank highest.
This year's 13th edition of the analysis reconfirmed earlier results of the Climate Risk Index: less developed countries are generally more affected than industrialised countries. Regarding future climate change, the Climate Risk Index may serve as a red flag for already existing vulnerability that may further increase in regions where extreme events will become more frequent or more severe due to climate change, said the report. While some vulnerable developing countries are frequently hit by extreme events, for others such disasters are a rare occurrence. It remains to be seen how much progress the Fijian climate summit in Bonn will make to address these challenges, the report observed. The COP23 aims to continue the development of the 'rule-book' needed for implementing the Paris Agreement, including the global adaptation goal and adaptation communication guidelines. A new 5-year-work plan of the Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage is to be adopted by the COP. It remains an open question how loss and damage should be taken up under the Paris Agreement. This year's COP presidency - the archipelago Republic of Fiji - as well as other Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are severely affected by climatic events.
Five SIDS, including Haiti (2nd), the Dominican Republic (10th) and Fiji (13th), rank among the 20 countries world-wide most affected by weather-related catastrophes in the past 20 years. Haiti and Fiji rank first and third in the annual index for 2016. Storms and their direct implications - precipitation, floods and landslides - were one major cause of damage in 2016.
According to the most recent scientific research, rising sea surface temperatures seem to play a key role in intensifying storms. Most of the affected countries in the Bottom 10 of the long-term index have a high ranking due to exceptional catastrophes. Of the ten most affected countries (1997-2016), nine were developing countries in the low income or lower-middle income country group, while only one was classified as an upper-middle income country. The climate summit in Bonn is continuing the development of the 'rule-book' needed for the implementation of the Paris Agreement, including the global adaptation goal and adaptation communication guidelines. The economic damages are estimated at US$ 2 billion, with Roanu also causing damage to India and Bangladesh.

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