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US hit by twenty separate billion-dollar climate disasters in 2021, NOAA report says

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    The US was battered by 20 separate billion-dollar climate and weather disasters in 2021, one of the most catastrophic climate years on record which led to at least 688 deaths, according to the annual report of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa).

    Damage from the year’s 20 most costly disasters, which included thousands of wildfires burning across western states, frigid temperatures and hail storms in Texas, tornadoes in the south-east, and tropical storms saturating the east coast, totaled around $145bn.

    This makes 2021 the third costliest extreme weather year on record, with four tropical storms – Elsa, Fred, Ida and Nicholas – accounting for just over half the total price tag.

    The deadly mega-disasters were scattered throughout 2021 and hit communities from coast to coast, starting with flash floods and bomb cyclones in California and ending with Colorado’s most destructive ever wildfire, which tore through almost 1,100 homes and 6,000 acres (2,400 hectares), causing more than $10bn of damage.

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