Japan was ranked at the top of a list of countries most affected by extreme weather as climate change takes a heavier toll on nations, both rich and poor, according to an annual ranking that measures the damage done by extreme weather to human life and economies.

The Global Climate Risk Index, published on Wednesday by environmental think tank Germanwatch, rated Japan as the most weather-affected country in 2018, hit by a triple whammy of extreme summer heat, torrential rainfall and a powerful typhoon.

The report says Japan faced "three exceptionally strong extreme weather events" that year. The intense rain in western Japan in July of that year had some areas recording two to four times more monthly rainfall than average, killing more than 200 people and forcing 2.3 million people to evacuate. The severe summer heat wave in July and August also hit Japan hard, claiming 138 lives and causing more than 70,000 people to be hospitalized with heat-related illnesses, the report said.