Last year's extreme weather across the U.S. - 2011 was the most expensive year ever for natural disasters - is raising concern among scientists and policymakers about the nation's ability to withstand a shifting climate, according to a story in the Herald Tribune.
Damage from tornadoes, floods, droughts, hurricanes and wildfires caused more than $200 billion in losses and 1,000 deaths across the nation last year. Florida escaped major damage, but saw record high temperatures over the summer, after a much colder than normal winter.
Recent trends show the cost of natural disasters escalating while the government's financial ability to deal with those losses shrinks. Climate scientists anticipate an uptick in extreme weather as the global climate warms.
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