Research Outline

Global Rate of Natural Disasters

Early Findings


You want to invest in environmental protection and care and you are interested in knowing the global rate of natural disasters to help inform your investment decision. You are most interested in earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes and hurricanes.


  • According to the International Disaster Database, there were 282 natural disasters in 2018.
  • In 2017, there were 276 natural disasters, 325 in 2016, 380 in 2015 and 320 in 2014.
  • There were 20 earthquakes in 2018, 19 in 2017, 30 in 2016 and 23 in 2015, according to the same dataset.
  • The International Disaster Database does not break down the number of tsunamis, tornadoes and hurricanes. Instead, it groups them all under the Extreme Weather category. There were 84 incidences of extreme weather in 2018.
  • In 2018, there were a total of 21 hurricanes, 8 in the Atlantic Basin and 13 in the Pacific Basin.
  • There were 1,169 preliminary reports of tornadoes in the US in 2018.
  • Since the US accounts for 75% of the world's tornadoes, the total number of preliminary reports of tornadoes in the world in 2018 can be calculated to be 1,559 (1,169/0.75).
  • There were 2 tsunami warnings issued in 2018, according to UNESCO, both of which in Indonesia.


We suggest continuing this research by analyzing the incidence rates of various natural disasters across a 10-year period to determine how natural disasters have changed over time. We can look at earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes and hurricanes, and also at the global rate of all natural disasters. (15 hours, $435)