Economic losses caused by natural catastrophes are trending upwards

Loss events 1980 to 2018 MunichRe
Number of loss events by type 1980-2018 Munich Re

Since 1980 Munich Re , a global provider of reinsurance, primary insurance, has been collecting data on natural events worldwide which are triggered by natural and man-made climate variability.  These are categorized as geophysical – earthquake, tsunami, and other volcanic activity, meteorological – tropical storms, extratropical storms, convection storms, and local storms, hydrological – flash floods, floods, landslides and other mass movement, and climatological – extreme temperatures, drought, forest  and wild fires. The data reveals an accelerating trend dominated by meteorological and hydrological events.

Overall and insured losses 1980 to 2017 MunichRe
Overall and insured losses (US$ billions) 1980-2017

Munich Re tracks not only insured events, but also uninsured events.  In the early 1980s, only around a quarter of losses resulting from natural disasters were insured, even in highly developed industrialized countries. Today that proportion has risen to nearly a half of all losses being covered.  For developing and emerging countries the proportion of insured losses has not improved in decades and is significantly less than 10%.