World oil use increased by 1.3 percent in 2005, a significant slowdown after a record-breaking rise of 3.4 percent in 2004. The International Energy Agency estimates that oil demand reached 3.8 billion tons in 2005, or 83.3 million barrels a day.
Meanwhile, the carbon dioxide released during the combustion of all this oil is contributing to climate change, which many scientists worry is producing more extreme weather events. Economic damages from weather-related disasters hit an unprecedented $204 billion in 2005, nearly doubling the previous record of $112 billion set in 1998 and reflecting the high number of disasters affecting built-up areas. Three of the 10 strongest hurricanes ever recorded occurred in 2005.