Climate Risk Index: Philippines and Canada among most impacted

Climate Risk Index

The latest Climate Risk Index (CRI) has just been released by Germanwatch, and it doesn’t look good for anyone. Even high income countries such as Canada aren’t immune from the effects of severe weather events.


The Climate Risk Index gathers demographic, economic and meteorological information to rank countries according to how badly impacted they are by weather-related loss events.

Data is collected and analyzed by Munich Re, one of the world’s largest re-insurance companies. The Climate Risk Index also uses socio-economic data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

In the past 20 years, more than 500,000 people lost their lives as a result of more than 12,000 extreme weather events, which caused an estimated USD 3.54 trillion in economic losses.


The ranking shows Japan, the Philippines and Germany as the countries most affected by severe weather in 2018.

Other countries adversely affected by sever weather include Madagascar, India, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Rwanda, Canada and Fiji.


In Canada, 103 deaths were attributed to severe weather events. Severe weather also caused a 0.12% drop in Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Canada’s sharp rise in the rankings (from 42nd place in 2017 to 9th place in 2018) is a cause for great concern.

2018 saw some of the coldest temperatures in a hundred years, with extreme flooding affecting over 4,000 residents in British Columbia after the winter thaw.

British Columbia also experienced one of the worst wildfire seasons on record, with over 2,100 separate fires burning more than 1.35 million hectares of forest, forcing over 16,000 residents to evacuate.

On the other side of Canada, 93 people dies as a result of a summer heatwave.


The Philippines also had a bad 2018. While the Southeast Asian nation of over 100 million people doesn’t significantly contribute to climate change, its citizens suffer the consequences.

Renato Redentor Constantino of the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities finds the whole situation to be quite unfair, saying that “those who are least responsible for the problem, are the ones who are suffering the most. This is unacceptable.”

The Philippines was hit with the most powerful typhoon ever recorded in 2018.

David Eckstein of Germanwatch said that “countries like Haiti, Philippines and Pakistan are repeatedly hit by extreme weather events and have no time to fully recover. That underlines the importance of reliable financial support mechanisms for poor countries like these not only in climate change adaptation, but also for dealing with climate-induced loss and damage.”

Germanwatch has presented the Global Climate Risk Index at the annual UN Climate Action Summit since 2006.

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