Global warming blamed for extreme weather

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Meteorological experts have blamed global warming for this year's extreme weather in the country, which continues to be hit by persistent heat waves and floods.

A girl runs through a fountain in downtown Lanzhou, capital of Gansu Province, on Friday, as the mercury rose to 40 C. [China Daily]
A girl runs through a fountain in downtown Lanzhou, capital of Gansu Province, on Friday, as the mercury rose to 40 C. [China Daily] 

China has recorded 6.4 days of hot whether, 1.9 days more than previous years on average.

Moreover, satellite-monitoring data on July 25 showed the surface temperature in some regions of Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Qinghai and Xinjiang had reached 45 C.

Meanwhile, storms and floods have hit 28 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities since March, resulting in 968 deaths and 507 missing people, with the total economic loss estimated at 181 billion yuan ($27 billion), according to the latest information released by the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters on Thursday.

"Global warming has caused the temperature in the Northern Hemisphere to increase," said Ren Fumin, chief instructor of the China Meteorological Administration (CMA).

Ren warned of more extreme weather in the coming days.

He said the immediate cause of the continuing hot whether and lasting rainstorms was "abnormal general circulation over the Northern Hemisphere".

The CMA has forecast a fresh round of rains in North China in the coming days.

The rainfall would last from July 30 to 31 and from August 3 to 4 in North and Northeast China, bringing some 100 to 150 millimeters of rain to Jilin, Liaoning and Heilongjiang provinces, it said.

"Local governments of Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning and Shandong (provinces) should be prepared for flood control before Saturday," said Chen Zhenlin, spokesman for the disaster relief and public service department of the CMA.

Rainstorms caused havoc in Liaoning and Jilin between July 19 and 22, affecting nearly 2 million people.

Chen said the CMA had already issued warnings to the local governments of the regions. He added that with the rains moving north, the pressure of flood control in the Yangtze River Delta area would find some relief.

The middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River have received 577.85 mm rain since May 1, 16.23 percent more than the same period in any average year.

"Compared to 1998, this year's rainstorms have brought along more intense and frequent rains since July 8," Ren said.

Although the overall rain capacity this year is less than what it was in 1998, almost daily cloudbursts broke rain records in six CMA observing stations situated on the Yangtze River.

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