Natural Disaster Are Intensifying; Project Teams Must Learn from Recent Catastrophes to Mitigate Growing Risks
The danger zone for deadly natural disaster knows no boundaries. Last year alone brought severe flooding in China and Peru, devastating earthquakes in Mexico, historic hurricanes in the United States and raging wildfires around the world. These events killed hundreds of people and destroyed thousands of homes. They also left whole communities without power and clean water for months. The financial impact is staggering. Hurricane Maria caused Puerto Rico US$22 billion in physical damage alone and was the 12th disaster in 2017 in U.S. territory to exceed US$1 billion in damage, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. In 2016, natural disasters caused global economic losses of US$210 billion—21 percent higher than the average of the 16 prior years, according to a report by Aon Benfield.