Dec 06, Colombo: In a new global index, Sri Lanka has been ranked second among the countries most affected by extreme weather events in 20 years since 1998.
The 2019 Long-Term Climate Risk Index published by Germanwatch has listed Puerto Rico, Sri Lanka and Dominica as the top three affected countries.
The index is part of a report, Global Climate Risk Index 2019, which was released at the annual climate summit in Poland yesterday.
The Global Climate Risk Index 2019 analyses to what extent countries and regions have been affected by impacts of weather-related loss events such as storms, floods, heat waves etc. from data available for 2017 and from 1998 to 2017.
Puerto Rico, Sri Lanka and Dominica were at the top of the list of the most affected countries in 2017. For the period from 1998 to 2017 Puerto Rico, Honduras and Myanmar rank highest.
The report said, In May 2017, heavy landslides and floods occurred in Sri Lanka (2) after strong monsoon rains in southwestern regions of the country and more than 200 people died after the worst rains on the Indian Ocean island since 2003. The monsoons displaced more than 600 000 people from their homes and 12 districts were affected. The inland southwest district of Ratnapura was most affected where over 20,000 people faced flash floods.
Of the ten most affected countries and territories (1998–2017), eight were developing countries in the low income or lower-middle income country group, one was classified as an upper-middle income country (Dominica) and one an advanced economy generating high income (Puerto Rico).
According to the report, more than 526,000 people died worldwide and there were losses of $3.47 trillion as a result of more than 11,500 extreme weather events between 1998 and 2017.
The report recommended the Climate Summit in Katowice to adopt the 'rulebook' needed for the implementation of the Paris Agreement, including the global adaptation goal and adaptation communication guidelines.