Typhoon Haiyan is a natural phenomenon, though one perhaps exacerbated by climate change.
The scale of suffering has been worsened by the five fold increase in the population of the Philippines since 1950.
Pressure on space and resources means people are more likely to live in areas vulnerable to storms.
Poverty to which population growth contributes means that people cannot afford sturdy dwellings which can withstand extreme weather events.
And the sheer number of people mean that more suffer when storms do strike and that recovery efforts are made more difficult.