The Stream, May 17: The Cost of Natural Disasters

Droughts, floods and other natural disasters are creating huge economic losses around the world, totaling about $US 2.5 trillion this century, according to estimates by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Bloomberg BNA reported. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged businesses to take steps to reduce disaster risk exposure when investing in new buildings and infrastructure.

Affordable flood insurance will remain available to current homeowners in high flood-risk areas of the United Kingdom until the end of July, one month after a deal between the government and insurance companies expires, the Guardian reported. Beyond this deadline, coverage policies and rates could change dramatically in the absence of a new deal.

Water Supply
South Africa and Lesotho are in the process of approving the second phase of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, Business Day Live reported. The $US 1.3 billion project, to be paid for by South Africa, will increase water supply for South Africa and hydropower generation for Lesotho when it is completed in 2020.

International funding for humanitarian aid in Yemen is necessary for the country to stabilize and successfully recover from its revolution, according to a top United Nations official in the country, Reuters reported. One major problem Yemen faces is water scarcity—more than half of the population lacks access to safe drinking water, the report said.

The Stream is a daily digest spotting global water trends. To get more water news, follow Circle of Blue on Twitter and sign up for our newsletter.

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