China is preparing for the return of more heat waves over the next 10 days, as temperatures are set to start rising in parts of the country on Saturday.
Some coastal cities are already on Highest alert level And inland regions warn of the dangers of dam collapse due to melting glaciers.
This Saturday is the “extreme heat” day in the Chinese calendar based on the lunar calendar.
Fu Jiaolan, chief meteorologist at the National Meteorological Center, told state media that the heat wave is expected to be similar in scope to the July 5-17 heatwaves, but more areas may experience temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit). Fahrenheit) or higher.
Some cities in Zhejiang province, home to many factories and exporters, on Friday issued red alerts – the highest in a three-level warning system – that predicted temperatures of at least 40 degrees Celsius over the next 24 hours.
The Ministry of Emergency Management warned Friday that the load on the national power grid may reach a new level this summer as demand for air conditioners increases by homes, offices and factories, as safe operation faces “harsh tests”.
“We have regulations that must be followed for all factories in China and Shanghai,” said Liu Zhang, president of Sika China Chemical Products Manufacturer.
“Every year we do things to make work more comfortable, for example giving workers ice cream when it gets too hot.”
The ministry said Zhejiang, as well as parts of Fujian, Guangdong, Hunan, Jiangxi and Chongqing city, are at risk of forest fires in the near term.
The western region of Xinjiang on Saturday warned of more floods, mudslides and risks to agriculture as heat waves swept across the region.
Chen Chunyan, chief expert at the Xinjiang Meteorological Observatory, told state media that the recent heat waves in Xinjiang were long-lasting and widespread.
She noted that extreme weather in the south and east of the region – more than twice the size of France – had already lasted for 10 days.
“The continued rise in temperature has accelerated the melting of glaciers in mountainous regions and caused natural disasters such as floods, mudslides and landslides in many places,” Chen said.
The China Meteorological Administration said the previous day that melting glaciers in Xinjiang posed a high risk of dam failure on a tributary of the Aksu River near China’s border with Kyrgyzstan.
Such heat waves can also affect crops, especially cotton, Chen said. Xinjiang produces about 20% of the world’s cotton crop, which is a water-thirsty crop. By some estimates, 20,000 liters of water are needed to produce one kilogram of cotton, which is enough for one shirt and two jeans.
The temperatures in China this summer have been described as extreme. From June 1 to July 20, the basins of the Yellow River and Yangtze River – major centers of industry and commerce – were hit by more than 10 days of warmer than usual temperatures.
Heat waves have also set other parts of East Asia, Western Europe, North Africa and North America scorched, leading to wildfires in many countries.
Scientists warn that climate change will make heat waves hotter and more frequent.
The highest temperature recorded in China is a matter of debate. According to Chinese media, the hottest period in the past 300 years was in July 1743 during the Qing Dynasty, when a French missionary in Beijing was said to have recorded an all-time high of 44.4°C.
In 2015, a local news portal reported 50.3 degrees Celsius at a weather station near Ayding, a dry lake in the Turpan Depression in Xinjiang.
The China Meteorological Administration said on Friday that temperatures in the Turpan oasis could reach 50 degrees Celsius next week.
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