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Climate Disasters Have Increased 4 X in Past 20 Yrs

The Oxfam International Organization has released
a new report:
Climate Alarm: Disasters increase as climate change bites

Climatic disasters are on the increase as the Earth warms up - in line with
scientific observations and computer simulations that model future climate.
2007 has been a year of climatic crises, especially floods, often of an
unprecedented nature. They included Africa's worst floods in three decades,
unprecedented flooding in Mexico, massive floods in South Asia and heat
waves and forest fires in Europe, Australia, and California. By mid November
the United Nations had launched 15 'flash appeals', the greatest ever number
in one year. All but one were in response to climatic disasters.

At the same time as climate hazards are growing in number, more people are
being affected by them because of poverty, powerlessness, population growth,
and the movement and displacement of people to marginal areas. The total
number of natural disasters has quadrupled in the last two decades - most
of them floods, cyclones, and storms. Over the same period the number of
people affected by disasters has increased from around 174 million to an
average of over 250 million a year. Small- and medium-scale disasters are
occurring more frequently than the kind of large-scale disasters that hit the
headlines.

[a short abstract of the report is here]
 http://www.oxfam.org/en/policy/briefingpapers/bp108_climate_change_alarm_0711

[the entire report is here]
 http://www.oxfam.org/en/files/bp108_climate_change_alarm_0711.pdf/download