Rise in damage from cyclones forecast

Feb. 1, 2012 at 4:28 PM

NEW HAVEN, Conn., Feb. 1 (UPI) -- Tropical cyclones will cause $109 billion in damages by 2100 because of vulnerability from population and economic growth. U.S. scientists say.

Researchers at Yale University say greater vulnerability to cyclones is expected to increase global tropical damage to more than double the current yearly average.

More intense storms will become more frequent with climate change, researchers said.

"The biggest storms cause most of the damage," Robert Mendelsohn, the lead economist on the Yale project, said. "With the present climate, almost 93 percent of tropical cyclone damage is caused by only 10 percent of the storms.

"Warming will increase the frequency of these high-intensity storms at least in the North Pacific and North Atlantic Ocean basins, causing most of the increase in damage."

The study's estimates are based on a future global population of 9 billion and an annual increase of approximately 3 percent in gross world product until 2100, the researchers said.

"More people making a lot more income will put more capital in harm's way," Mendelsohn said in a release Wednesday.

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