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The Philippines and Haiti suffered the biggest climate-related disasters last year, a study showed as U.N. envoys from 195 nations discussed ways to cope with the increasingly costly impacts of global warming.
The analysis from the Berlin-based research group Germanwatch gave more weight to the death toll and value of damage compared with the size of the economy and population of a country. The study didn't include damage from this year, including Super Typhoon Haiyan's devastation in the Philippines.
The study, which does not point to specific weather events, highlights the risk that developing nations are facing from more ferocious storms and frequent floods that scientists say are due to higher global temperatures.
"Haiti is the untold story of Hurricane Sandy," Sönke Kreft, leader of the climate policy team at Germanwatch, said yesterday after releasing the report during U.N. climate talks in Warsaw, Poland.
"Together with increasing evidence on the fingerprint of climate change, this provides a very powerful message."
Haiti suffered 54 deaths, 12,000 cholera cases and $750 million in damage when it was struck by rain and wind from the outer bands of Sandy, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center.
Delegates at the U.N. talks this week are discussing a "loss and damage" mechanism that examines how to help developing nations on the front lines of climate-related impacts.
The climate talks aim to lay the groundwork for a meeting in Paris in 2015 that could adopt an agreement that would limit greenhouse gas emissions (Alex Morales, Bloomberg, Nov. 12).
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Heavy rain is expected to continue to inundate much of India as thunderstorm activity makes a northwestward push towards the National Capital Region.
Severe weather is expected to continue to pester the Plains for the next few days, threatening millions with flooding downpours, damaging winds, hail and even a few tornadoes.
The northeastern United States will only get a couple days of dry, sunny weather before the next round of showers and thunderstorms rolls in at midweek.
Anyone in the Southeast hoping for a break from the warm, humid and unsettled weather will need to wait at least another week.
Persistent dryness and localized breezy weather may create difficulties for firefighters battling wildfires across the western United States early this week.
A storm will crawl through the northeastern part of the nation during the first weekend of summer with rounds of drenching showers and thunderstorms.
A severe weather outbreak seems likely to target portions of the Plains through Monday.
Lightning and persistent dry weather have teamed up to produce a number of wildfires in Oregon and northwestern Canada.