GENEVA (AP) — The U.N. weather agency blames human impact on the global climate for much of last year’s extreme weather that wreaked havoc in Asia and the Pacific region and in Europe.
The World Meteorological Organization’s annual assessment says 2013 was the sixth-warmest year on record. Thirteen of the 14 warmest years have occurred in the 21st century.
The agency’s secretary-general Michel Jarraud said Monday that sea-level rise leads to increasing damage from storm surges and coastal flooding, as Typhoon Haiyan demonstrated when it killed at least 6,100 people and caused $13 billion in damage to the Philippines and Vietnam. Meanwhile, Australia had its hottest year on record.
“Many of the extreme events of 2013 were consistent with what we would expect as a result of human-induced climate change,” Jarraud said.