A long-term look at tropical storms affecting the Philippines shows that the number of storms and casualties caused by them fluctuate by decade. Yet, a tendency of more storms and deaths occurring over time is visible in the data.
Despite the figures still being preliminary for 2019 and 2020, a record of more than 12,000 deaths occurred between 2011 to 2020, including almost 8,000 killed by super typhoon Yolanda in 2013. The 1980s were also a time when many storms ravaged the country – and more than 9,000 people died – but the number of 67 storms in the 80s still does not come close to the 2010s. This is despite the fact that the 2020 typhoon season is still ongoing in the Pacific. The decade’s 91st storm – typhoon Ulysses – hit the Philippines on Nov 11, killing 73 and affecting more than four million people.
The damage caused by typhoons has shot up in the last decade, in part caused by the severe destruction inflicted by Yolanda. The Asian Disaster Reduction Center estimates Yolanda’s damages at 481 billion Philippine pesos (10 billion U.S. dollars). Even when disregarding the cost of Yolanda, storm damages in the 2010s still stand at a staggering 336 billion pesos – more than double or even triple that of other decades – despite including only the years 2011 to 2018. Data showing monetary losses is not yet available from the ADRC website for 2019 and 2020, but available reports from the Philippines government show that another 38 billion pesos in losses could be added to the decade's tally still.