Philippines Tops Natural Disasters List – 2011 – UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction
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Philippines Tops Natural Disasters List
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines is on top of the list of countries in the world in terms of the occurrence of natural disasters in 2011, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction said Friday.
In a press conference held in Pasig City, Margareta Wahlstrom, who heads the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, said a total of 33 natural disasters ravaged various parts of the country last year that resulted in the death of scores of people and the destruction of millions of pesos worth of agricultural produce, infrastructure projects, and properties.
The worst disaster that hit the Philippines was typhoon “Sendong” (international code Washi) last December 17 in Mindanao where at least 1,430 individuals died.
Second to the Philippines was China with 21 recorded calamities in 2011, followed by the United States with 19, India and Indonesia both with 11, Mexico with 10, Guatemala and Japan with 7, Brazil 6, and finally Bangladesh, Nigeria, Peru, Thailand, Vietnam with 5 each.
According to Wahlstrom, Asia is still among the continents worst affected by disasters last year with 137 out of the 302, equivalent to 45 percent of the total figure.
She said out of the 29,782 people who were killed throughout the world by natural calamities last year, 26,567 lived in Asia, or 80.2 percent of the global figure.
In addition, 175,941,059 out of the 205,841,038 people who were adversely affected by disasters in the entire world in 2011 were in Asia, 85.5 percent of the total figure.
Wahlstrom said $274 billion out of the $365-billion economic losses due to disasters in 2011 also occurred in Asia, representing 75.1 percent of the global figure.
By the number of deaths, the earthquake/tsunami twin disaster that struck Japan last March was on top of the list with 19,846 people killed, followed by the “Sendong” devastation in Mindanao.
The flooding in Brazil at the beginning of 2011 claimed the lives of at least 900 people. The flood in Thailand resulted in the death of at least 813 people.
In Turkey, 604 people were trapped to death in an earthquake last October, while the floods that ravaged Pakistan from August to December claimed 509 people
Meanwhile, a storm on April in Mainland US took the lives of 350 persons.
Floods in Cambodia, China and India resulted to 690 deaths combined.