Debunked: Claim there are now four times as many extreme weather events as in 1970
By Paul Homewood
The Economist has been running this video on Twitter, with the usual fraudulent claims.
The film uses two examples:
- Hurricane Harvey
- Bangladesh flooding.
They forget to mention that Texas has had even more intensive storms in the past, notably 1978 and 1979, and that Bangladesh regularly floods.
But the headline claim is based on this graph:
The first thing to highlight about this, which should really give the whole away as an giant fraud, is that there were apparently virtually no extreme weather events in the early 20thC. Nobody with half a brain could seriously believe this, but apparently Economist readers do.
There appears to be no provenance given for this graph, which in itself is utterly damning for a supposedly serious journal. But it seems to be based on a similarly fraudulent claim from the insurance company, Munich Re, which was doing the rounds a year or two ago, again publicised by the Economist:
As I explained a few months ago, these “disasters” are classified in terms of monetary value. Munich Re only count the most expensive events, albeit adjusted for inflation. (Note – the only other obvious classification is the death toll – but as the video reveals, this is massively reduced).
But, of course, as has been thoroughly explained many times, as the world’s GDP increases, so do economic losses.
No serious organisation would attempt to blame these increased losses on climate change, or any other extraneous causes. But Munich Re has a vested interest in blaming increased premiums on the climate.
It is a sad fact of life that, to get to the truth, we have to rely on independent analysts with no vested interests.
For instance, Roger Pielke Jr:
It is self evident that weather related disaster losses are actually reducing as a proportion of global GDP.
But don’t let simple facts get in the way of propaganda.