Environment. Natural disasters have cost €70 billion worldwide since the beginning of the year

Floods and storms around the world weighed on insurers’ bills in the first half of the year, with economic losses caused by natural disasters amounting to 72 billion dollars (70 billion euros), according to an initial estimate by Swiss Re published this Tuesday.

If this figure is lower than that of the first half of 2021, during which economic losses worldwide had reached 91,000 million dollars, the Swiss group that acts as an insurer of insurers has nevertheless highlighted the growing weight of the so-called secondary disasters, increasingly costly, between the floods in Australia, the winter storms in February in Europe or the hailstorms in France, he underlines in a press release.

Adding man-made disasters such as industrial accidents, economic losses from natural disasters and claims reached $75 billion in the first half, compared to $95 billion in the first half of 2021, it said. the reinsurer.

Insurers’ bills rose to $38 billion, up from $49 billion the previous year. Only the bill for natural disasters (excluding human disasters), however, amounts to 35,000 million dollars, or 22% above the ten-year average, calculates the reinsurer, which warns of the effects of climate change.

Increasing floods and storms

The frequency of so-called secondary disasters, such as floods and storms, as opposed to major disasters such as earthquakes or hurricanes, is increasing around the world, it notes.

“The effects of climate change are evident in the increasing number of extreme weather events, such as the unprecedented floods in Australia and South Africa,” said Martin Bertogg, Swiss Re.’s business director specializing in disaster coverage, quoted in the statement. press.

The February storms in Europe cost insurers between $3.5 billion, according to Swiss Re estimates, to $3.5 billion, the reinsurer specifies.

Estimates of hailstorms and heavy rains in France amount to 4,000 million euros in terms of insured losses.

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