Climate Change Costs the Global Economy €136 Billion Annually
Extreme weather events linked to climate change cost the global economy an average of $143 billion, or €136 billion, per year. Most of these costs (63%) are attributed to human casualties, as revealed by a study published in the specialized scientific journal Nature Communications.
Researchers, Professors Ilan Noy and Rebecca Newman, meticulously examined relevant data over two decades, from 2000 to 2019. According to their analysis, the damage caused by extreme weather conditions associated with climate change averages $143 billion per year, although this figure fluctuates from year to year.
This total sum is significantly underestimated, say the researchers, as there are practically no data available on expenses related to disasters in poor countries. This overall amount also does not account for indirect additional costs, such as reduced crop yields and rising sea levels, for example.
The total sum of $143 billion annually is divided into human statistical life losses—almost $90 billion—and economic losses—$53 billion per year.
The year with the lowest climate-related expenses was 2001, with losses of $23.9 billion.
The year with the highest climate-related expenses was 2008, with $620 billion.
Years when expenses reach their highest levels, including 2003, 2008, and 2010, are predominantly associated with high mortality rates.
The events that triggered these peaks include the 2003 heatwave across continental Europe, Tropical Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar in 2008, and the drought in Somalia in 2010.
According to scientists, over these two decades, 1.2 billion people suffered climate-related damage. This anthropogenic climate change caused a net economic loss of $260.8 billion due to 185 corresponding events.
More than 64% of climate change-related losses are linked to storms, including significant losses from events like Hurricane Harvey. Additionally, 16% of losses are attributed to heatwaves, while floods and droughts account for 10% each. Forest fires contribute to 2% of net losses. Lastly, cold events related to climate change account for 2% of net losses.