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Chinese Concern

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 9 months ago


Oread Daily http://oreaddaily.blogspot.com/


Chinese authorities joined a growing international list laying the blame for increasing bizarre and severe weather in their countries on global warming.


Such extremes are likely to get worse and more common in the future, said Song Lianchun, head of the China Meteorological Administration's Department of Forecasting Services and Disaster Mitigation.


"These kind of extremes will become more frequent, and more obvious. This has already been borne out by the facts," he said at a news conference carried live on the central government Web site. "I think the impact on our country will definitely be very large."


Some parts of China have had too much rain, and others too little this summer.


About 7.5 million people are suffering from drought in a wide swathe of the country which includes Jiangxi and Hunan in the south to Heilongjiang and Jilin provinces in the northeast, Xinhua news agency said.


In Jiangxi, Hunan and Heilongjiang, more than one third of agricultural land has been hit, the report added.


Temperatures have been topping out at about 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit), which has strained power grids.


Shanghai experienced its second hottest day on record on Sunday when the mercury touched 39.6 degrees Celsius (103.3 degrees Fahrenheit), with similarly high temperatures expected this week, the Shanghai Daily said.


Sunday's heat wave caused power and water consumption for the 17 million people of China's economic hub to hit all-time highs, which posed a "grave supply threat", according to the paper.


Weather forecasters are now expecting Shanghai to swelter through at least 22 days of temperatures above 35 degrees this summer, which would make it the hottest since records first were kept, the paper said.


Less water flows down China's two biggest rivers now than 40 years ago because global warming is drying up the wetlands that feed them, a state news agency reported Monday, citing Chinese scientists.


Meanwhile, storms in the northern province of Shanxi have killed more than 20 people and destroyed more than 4,000 homes. In one county of the province, it rained for 36 hours non-stop starting from Saturday evening.


Another 26 died and 26 were missing in the neighbouring province of Shaanxi after rainstorms over the past few days, while 21 were killed and 61 were missing in central Henan, Xinhua said.


"The increased rainfall didn't lead to more water flow in the rivers because the evaporation was so fast as a result of global warming," Li Shijie, a researcher with the Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, said. The institute is connected to the Chinese Academy of Sciences.


The following article comes from Xinhua.


China blames global warming for extreme weather


BEIJING -- China's top meteorological official has blamed global warming for extreme weather in China this year, urging concerned departments to improve emergency responses to reduce possible losses.


"Extreme weather has incurred frequent natural disasters such as rainstorms, floods and droughts across the country this year," said Zheng Guoguang, chief of the China Meteorological Administration (CMA).


Fierce rainstorms swept China this summer, triggering floods, landslides and mud-rock flows. Sichuan Province and Chongqing Municipality in the southwest recorded the heaviest rainfall in record while a year ago they were ravaged by all time high

temperatures and severe droughts.


Almost half a million people have been evacuated from the projected path of floodwaters from the Huaihe River, which is expected to see its worst flooding since 1954.


Lightning strikes have killed 282 Chinese so far this year, according to the CMA. The administration reported 193 deaths between January 1 and June 25 which means nearly 100 people have died in less than four weeks.


Chen Yu, a senior engineer with the CMA's National Climate Center, said the death toll caused by lightning in the first half of the year was 252, 109 more than last year's same period.


China's death toll from natural disasters stood at a staggering 715 with 129 people missing by July 16, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.


Widespread and prolonged drought, which hit the country's north, northwest and southwest in the first half, left more than 12 million people and 11 million head of livestock short of drinking water and also affected 14 million hectares of arable land, among which 3.1 million hectares are sown to crops.


Meteorologists estimated that the heat wave lingering in the southern and southeastern regions are not likely to be relieved in the short term.

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