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Disasters Displace 3 Percent of World Population in 7 Years

Posted by feww on July 22, 2015

One person displaced by a disaster every second, while one in every 122 humans is a refugee!

An estimated one person has been displaced by a disaster every second since 2008, with 19.3 million people forced to flee their homes in 2014 alone.

In 2014, 17.5 million people were forced to flee their homes due to disasters caused by extreme  weather events such as storms and flooding, while 1.7 million by geophysical hazards, especially earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, said  the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC) of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) in its global report released this week.

The report argues that these drivers are increasing the number of people becoming displaced, and the risk that their displacement becomes a long-term problem. Today, the likelihood of being displaced by a disaster is 60% higher than it was four decades ago, and an analysis of 34 cases reveals that disaster displacement can last for up to 26 years.

People in both rich and poor countries can be caught in protracted, or long-term, displacement. In the US, over 56,000 people are still in need of housing assistance following Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and 230,000 people have been unable to establish new homes in Japan following the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear accident.

Disasters displaced more than 19.3 million people in 100 countries last year, according to the NRC report.

  • Since 2008, an average of 26.4 million people have been displaced by disasters each year—equivalent to one person displaced every second.
  • Asia, home to 60% of the world’s population, and with 16.7 million people displaced, accounted for 87 per cent of the global total in 2014.
  • China, India and the Philippines experienced the highest levels of displacement in absolute terms, both in 2014 and for the 2008 to 2014 period.
  • Displacements of fewer than 100,000 people made up 95.4 per cent of the events recorded in 2014, but only 17 percent of the total number displaced.
  • Disasters caused by extreme weather events accounted for 86 percent of all displacements  in the 7-year report period (2008 to 2014), with the remaining 14 percent being due to geophysical events, such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
  • In 2014, Europe experienced double its average level of displacement for the past seven years. 190,000 people were displaced in 2014, mostly by flood disasters in the Balkans.

Mandatory evacuation zones in Fukushima prefecture
Via NRC/ IDMC. Japan’s triple disasters, Tōhoku earthquake, the massive tsunami and the nuclear meltdowns, forced more than 470,000 people to flee their homes, and four years later about 230,000 are still displaced. [The monkey government of warmongering Shinzo Abe is more interested in throwing obscene amounts of money at the arms industry, instead of building new homes for its displaced and traumatized people.] “The mental and physical health of IDPs has also deteriorated. A 2015 survey of evacuees revealed that many from both inside and outside official evacuation zones were suffering from sleeping disorders, anxiety, loneliness and depression. Fukushima is the only prefecture where the number of deaths resulting from health issues and suicides related to the disaster has exceeded the toll from the direct impacts of the earthquake and tsunami.”

World at War: One in Every 122 Humans is a Refugee

UNHCR’s annual Global Trends Report: World at War, released on June 18, 2015 said that worldwide displacement in 2014 was at the highest level ever recorded.

An astounding 59.5 million people, a population the size of Canada and Australia combined, were forcibly displaced at the end of 2014, compared to 51.2 million a year earlier and 37.5 million ten years ago.

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