60 years of heavy rain in southern China

Floods caused by torrential rain forced 177,600 people to relocate, destroyed 1,729 homes, damaged 27.13 hectares of crops and caused more than $250 million in losses, the Guangdong Emergency Management said Tuesday.

State media reported that Guangdong is one of at least seven provinces where record rains have caused severe landslides and road flooding. And videos on social media showed in the southwestern province of Guizhou, collapsing rivers that spilled over roads, swept away cars and homes.

The torrential rains come amid warnings from experts that severe weather is becoming more frequent.

Precipitation in Guangxi, Guangdong and Fujian reached the highest levels since 1961, with those regions recording an average rainfall of 621 mm (24.4 inches) in the 46-day period from May 1 and June 15, according to state news . Xinhua Agency. That number equals more than 90% of the country’s average of 672.1 mm for the whole of 2021, based on data from the National Climate Center.

Weather experts say conditions are ripe for more torrential rainstorms in the south of the country and heat waves in the north.

“Cold and warm air converged over southern China, and the two sides got into an impasse and tug of war,” Wang Weiwei, an analyst with weather.com.cn, the arm of the China Meteorological Administration, told Reuters.

Heavy rains are expected to continue into Tuesday in the southern provinces of Guizhou, Jiangxi, Anhui, Zhejiang and Guangxi and then move north.

Severe weather warning

The annual flood season in China traditionally begins in June and is usually most severe in the densely populated agricultural areas along the Yangtze River and its tributaries.

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But it has become more severe and dangerous in recent years and experts have warned that things could get worse.

In April, the National Climate Center warned that heavy rains are expected over the southern and southwestern parts of the country, as well as the typically dry desert terrain of southern Tibet.

a 2022 Report By the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it said it had “high confidence” that daily extreme precipitation had increased in parts of the region and that heavy rainfall would “increase in frequency and intensity”, leading to more frequent landslides in the regions. mountainous.

China recorded an average annual rainfall of 672.1 mm last year, 6.7% more than normal, according to a report from the National Climate Center in May. The report concluded that China’s weather variability is getting worse, especially in terms of the intensity of rainstorms during the summer months.

The record rainfall comes amid efforts by China to tackle climate change.

Last week, the country’s Ministry of Environment and Environment announced a new national climate change strategy To build resilience against the effects of global warming by 2035. The roadmap focuses more on monitoring climate change and its associated impacts as well as developing early warning and risk management systems.

At least 1.1 million residents of southeast China’s Jiangxi Province were affected by floods and torrential rains between May 28 and June 11, according to the official Xinhua news agency, while 223,000 hectares of farmland were destroyed in the timber and bamboo-producing province.

in early June, high rain In southern China at least 32 people were killed. More than 2,700 homes were severely damaged and 96,160 hectares of farmland destroyed in the rice-producing province of Hunan.

high alert

Last summer, 398 people were killed devastating floods Rip the center of Henan Province. Among the dead were 12 passengers Sinking In a submerged subway line. The provincial capital of Zhengzhou witnessed the highest number of deaths in what the authorities described as “once every thousand years“It’s raining.

State authorities have been on high alert ever since, amid growing questions about the preparedness of Chinese cities for severe weather.

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