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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Climate change to bring more floods: World Bank

Thailand's worst floods in half a century have killed 533 people (AFP, Joan Manuel Baliellas)

HANOI (AFP) — Climate change will bring more floods and extreme weather to Southeast Asia, a World Bank official said Thursday on a visit to the region, where hundreds have died in severe inundation.

"What we are seeing is there are more floods, more extreme weather events, higher temperature, more variable rainfalls and we believe that is caused by climate change. And we should expect this to increase, sadly," Andrew Steer, the World Bank's special envoy for climate change, told reporters in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi.

Thailand's worst floods in half a century have killed 533 people and damaged the homes and livelihoods of millions around the country.

In neighbouring Cambodia, the deadliest floods since 2000 have killed at least 247 people while more than 100 have died in Vietnam, mostly in the southern Mekong Delta.

Steer, who cancelled plans to visit Thailand on his regional tour because of the disaster, said the floods there were "consistent with what we know to be true about climate change."

The United Nations says climate change, fuelled by hydrocarbon-based energy systems, is the world's most pressing environmental issue.


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