US-sized Cyclone Yasi could cost Australia more than $2 billion
Cyclone Yasi flattened properties, overturned luxury yachts, and ripped up plantations. Australia's climate change adviser warns of more such storms to come.
As the disaster-ravaged state of Queensland dusts itself off from Cyclone Yasi, economists are warning that Australia’s latest tussle with nature could wipe more than $2 billion off the country’s gross domestic product. Food prices and insurance premiums are expected to rise, while a vital tourism and agricultural area has been decimated.
Still, considering Yasi was a category five cyclone only a little smaller than the United States, analysts are saying Australia should consider itself lucky.
Yasi flattened properties, overturned luxury yachts, and ripped up plantations along a 125-mile-stretch of Queensland’s picturesque coast when it came ashore with winds of more than 125 mph late Wednesday night. On Thursday some 130,000 properties remained without electricity as Australia deployed 4,000 soldiers to help with the recovery effort. At least one person is known to have died in the cyclone, asphyxiated by fumes from a generator operating in a small room.
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