ENVIRONMENT

5 Of The Deadliest Weather Disasters Of 2015

Natural disasters are getting a LOT worse.

A new disaster report from the United Nations found that weather-related disasters over the past 10 years have occurred almost daily -- nearly twice as often as they did two decades ago.

The report released Monday, titled "The Human Cost of Weather Related Disasters," concluded that over the past two decades, 90 percent of disasters were tied to "floods, storms, heat waves and other weather-related events." The remaining 10 percent were "geophysical" disasters, including earthquakes and volcanoes.

While the study authors say the "jury's out" on whether the rise in weather events is connected to climate change, many climatologists agree that a warming atmosphere exacerbates the severity of some weather disasters

Below are some 2015's deadliest weather disasters:

  • Heat wave in India
    A heat wave in&nbsp;India in May killed about&nbsp;<a href="http://emdat.be/disaster_profiles/index.html">2,500 people</a>, U
    Pacific Press via Getty Images
    A heat wave in India in May killed about 2,500 people, UN data shows, largely in the southern states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. With temperatures hovering around 120 degrees Fahrenheit for days, it's been declared the fifth-deadliest heat wave on record.

    Many of the victims who died from dehydration and heat stroke were poor farmers and construction workers who couldn't afford to stop working outdoors despite the dangers, as well as elderly people living in poverty.

    The brutalizing heat melted asphalt in New Delhi, photos showed, turning road markings into a swirling mess. 

    In the photo above, taken during the heat wave, overheated passengers waiting for a train at Allahabad junction lay under the platform's shade.
  • Heat wave in Pakistan
    A heat wave in Pakistan, just weeks after the deadly one in neighboring India, killed <a href="http://emdat.be/disaster_profi
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    A heat wave in Pakistan, just weeks after the deadly one in neighboring India, killed 1,229 people in June, mainly in the southern port city of Karachi, UN data shows. Some estimates on the death toll from Pakistan were slightly higher

    Pictured above, Pakistanis attend a funeral in Karachi for unclaimed people killed by the insufferable heat. Temperatures as high as 113 degrees Fahrenheit sent more than 65,000 heatstroke patients to hospitals.

    The heat wave, The Associated Press noted, struck during Ramadan, during which the the city's Muslim majority observes dawn-to-dusk fasting.
  • Floods and landslides exacerbated by Cyclone Komen
    Heavy monsoon rains made worse by <a href="http://www.weather.com/storms/hurricane/news/tropical-cyclone-komen-bangladesh-mya
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/Khin Maung Win
    Heavy monsoon rains made worse by Tropical Cyclone Komen in August killed at least 493 people and displaced millions in six Asian countries, The Weather Channel reported. The devastating weather event brought more than three feet of rain to parts of Bangladesh and Myanmar, and triggered deadly flooding in Pakistan, India, Nepal and Vietnam over two weeks.

    The flooding was so bad in India, it derailed two trains carrying up to 1,600 passengers and killed dozens, CNN reported. 

    In the photo above, a boy swimming southwest of Yangon, Myanmar, accepts food from people handing out donations.
  • Flooding in Malawai
    Flooding in Malawi in January claimed 276 lives, UN data shows, and forced&nbsp;President Peter Mutharika to declare&nbsp;hal
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/Thoko Chikondi
    Flooding in Malawi in January claimed 276 lives, UN data shows, and forced President Peter Mutharika to declare half of the densely populated country a disaster zone.

    Nearly a quarter-million people in Malawi were affected, including 230,000 injured, according to data collected by The Guardian. The floods ravaged about 158,000 acres of land and were estimated to have cost the nation about $51 million in damage. 

    In the photo above, family members wait outside their home for relief teams in the southern district of Chikwawa, Malawi.
  • Flooding in Chile
    Highly unusual floods in Chile's&nbsp;Atacama desert in March left <a href="http://emdat.be/disaster_profiles/index.html">178
    ASSOCIATED PRESS/Aton Chile, Marcelo Hernandez, File
    Highly unusual floods in Chile's Atacama desert in March left 178 dead, UN reports show. The Weather Channel described it as "over 14 years' worth of rain in 24 hours" and said the flooding was the most extraordinary weather event so far in 2015. 

    Chile President Michelle Bachelet said the damage would total at least $1.5 billion in the region, which is typically one of the driest places in the world.

    In the photo above, a woman in Copiapo, the capital of the Atacama Region, rests on a mattress on a street overcome by mud and floodwaters.

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