Spain experienced one of its most severe droughts, the ninth most expensive climate disaster in the world per capita in 2023; it cost €45.5 per Spaniard.
This environmental tragedy incurred a staggering total expense exceeding €2.1 billion. The annual report by Christian Aid, an international development organization, highlights this.
It emphasizes the grave change of climate change on populations, detailing the financial strain of the top 20 climate catastrophes globally, including cyclones, floods, and fires.
Christian Aid typically computes costs by dividing the damage from disasters like fires, floods, and droughts by the population in the impacted areas.
However, some events defy calculation. The September floods in Libya, for instance, claimed about 11,000 lives in Derna and resulted in ‘incalculable’ damage. The cost was estimated at €95.6 per person, considering the required humanitarian aid.
The focus on Spain’s drougSpain’s being categorized in the report reveals the regional variations of this crisis. Although the information is specific to April in Catalonia, where consumption restrictions were imposed in 22 localities, the calculation encompasses all Spaniards.
Throughout 2023, Spain grappled with high temperatures and water scarcity, such as unusually high temperatures that caused 38.8 degrees to be recorded at the Cordoba airport on April 26. The lack of water generally affected agricultural production and the olive harvest and had an even more significant impact on wheat and rye.
The government’s aid package for water supply and farming support equates to a per capita cost of around €45.5.
Spain’s drougSpain’s drougSpain’sdsled by Hawaii’s AuguHaHawaii’swAuguHawaii’swaiians €3,700 per person. This comparison underscores the varied impact of climate disasters worldwide—Spain’s reminder of the escalating economic toll of climate change.