In 2021, the Emergency Event Database (EM-DAT) recorded 432 disastrous events related to natural hazards worldwide. Overall, these accounted for 10,492 deaths, affected 101.8 million people and caused approximately 252.1 billion US$ of economic losses. As a continent, Asia was the most severely impacted, suffering 40% of all disaster events and accounting for 49% of the total number of deaths and 66% of the total number of people affected. Globally, whilst the number of deaths and the number of people affected were below their 20-year averages, 2021 was marked by an increase in the number of disaster events and extensive economic losses. Five of the top ten most economically costly disasters in 2021 occurred in the United States of America and resulted in a total economic cost of 112.5 billion US$.
With 252 billion US$ of reported economic damage, 2021 is the fourth most damaging year recorded in EM-DAT over the last two decades. Hurricane Ida alone cost $65 billion and ranks as the 6th most damaging disaster of the last 20 years.