Politicians might not believe in climate change, but insurance companies do. They track disasters, and it turns out that disasters just in the first six months of this year already cost the world more than any other year of disasters on record.

The price tag for 2011 disasters reached $265 billion. Most of that cost ($210 billion) came from the tsunami in Japan. But flooding in Australia, tornadoes in the United States, and earthquakes in New Zealand also contributed, and the Munich Re insurance giant draws a connection between some of these disasters and climate change. Before 2011, the record-holding year for costliest disasters ever was 2005, the year Hurricane Katrina devastated the southeastern U.S. coast.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Even people who don't believe in climate change should take note of this trend: You can't choose not to believe in insurance premiums, and they're going up.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.