Hurricane Ian is 15th billion-dollar disaster in U.S. this year

Hurricane Ian, which made landfall in Florida late last month and ravaged the area as it pushed north to the Carolinas, is the latest of 15 billion-dollar climate and weather disasters logged in the U.S. this year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The devastating storm was among six new costly disasters recorded since June of this year, according to a report from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

The new count makes 2022 the country’s eighth consecutive year experiencing 10 or more climate and weather disasters costing more than $1 billion each.

Hurricane Ian was joined on the latest list by Hurricane Fiona, which hit Puerto Rico in mid-September, and two other severe storm events this summer.

Wildfires in the West and July flooding in Kentucky and in Missouri also made the list.

The disaster losses total around $29.3 billion, according to NOAA — without accounting for the damages from Ian, Fiona and the Western wildfires, which have not yet been calculated.

The NOAA report estimates the total cost may approach $100 billion as the year wears on and as damages are assessed.

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