Multiple floods, heat waves, storms, Mediterranean episode, Cevennes rains: France is exposed to numerous natural disasters.

For the past twenty years, France has faced increasingly frequent natural risks. Between flood, storm or heat wave, all these phenomena hit the French territory as well as the population each year.

According to a report made public on Wednesday December 4, 2019 by the German Think Tank Germanwatch, France is in 15th place among the countries most exposed to climate risks. Germany is also included in this ranking and also classified red (11th to 20th country).

Also in red, India, Madagascar, Bangladesh, El Salvador and Haiti.

A heavy record

How to explain this classification?

Since the beginning of the 90s, France has suffered from climatic events of great magnitude as in 1999 with a storm which caused the death of 35 people. In 2010, it was the storm Xynthia, which left their mark causing the deaths of 53 people, as well as extensive property damage.

The floods have also taken their toll, as has not been seen in recent years. Thus, flash floods have caused the death of many people in recent years.

Heavy rains hit L’Aude in 1999, causing 34 deaths. In 2018, the Aude was again hit by major floods. A very heavy record was to deplore, 15 people died, 99 injured and 257 municipalities were recognized in a state of natural disaster (204 in Aude, 29 in Hérault and 24 in Tarn).

The meteorologist Guillaume Séchet, author of the book Météo extreme (Ed. Hugo Image) explains “Because of global warming, it is estimated that France will suffer, by 2100, about 20% more Mediterranean episodes, The waterproofing of the soil being more and more important and the demographic pressure increasing in these regions, the consequences of these extreme phenomena will be more dramatic in the long term than they were a few years ago”.

These increasingly frequent and significant risks in terms of loss of life and property damage also represent a real adaptation challenge for insurers. Indeed, the floods that took place between the end of May and the beginning of June 2016 cost more than 1.4 billion euros. These are therefore the most costly floods since the creation of the natural disaster regime in 1982.

Spatial planning a necessity to face the risk

The resilience of territories and buildings is a theme intrinsically linked to that of natural risk. Indeed, cities have a great role to play in protecting populations and must therefore adapt to the risk. With regard to buildings, their design must be redesigned to meet the requirements imposed by natural hazards. They must therefore be stronger, but also better insulated to cope with the increasingly common heat waves. The Germanwatch NGO estimates that periods of extreme heat will be 100 times more likely than a century ago.

At Ogoxe, resilience is also at the heart of the solutions we develop. Our solutions allow infrastructures to be protected thanks to our real-time alert system.