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China Issues “Red Alert” as Nation’s Largest Lake Runs Dry

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China Issues "Red Alert" as Nation's Largest Lake Runs Dry

The Jiangxi government in central China has issued a first-ever “red alert” after the nation’s largest lake, Poyang, shrunk to a record low, threatening water supplies.

Since June, China’s Poyang Lake, typically a crucial flood outlet for the Yangtze, China’s longest river, has been experiencing severe drought.

In the past three months, water levels at the lake’s crucial monitoring location have dropped from 19.43 meters to 7.1 meters.

China Issues "Red Alert" as Nation's Largest Lake Runs Dry

With continued scant rainfall, the Jiangxi Water Monitoring Centre predicted that Poyang lake’s water levels would drop dramatically over the next few days.

According to the report, rainfall since July is 60% less than it was a year ago.

A long dry spell across the Yangtze river basin severely reduced hydropower output and harmed crop growth in advance of the autumn harvest, and as many as 267 weather stations in China reported record temperatures in August.

China Issues "Red Alert" as Nation's Largest Lake Runs Dry

While much of southwest China has experienced relief from the drought thanks to heavy rain, Jiangxi has now experienced extremely dry conditions for more than 70 days.

The local water bureau reported earlier this week that 10 reservoirs in the neighbouring Anhui province had dropped below the “dead pool” level, rendering them incapable of releasing water downstream.

This week, state weather forecasters warned that the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze were still experiencing drought conditions, necessitating efforts to seed clouds and divert water from other sources.

Source: Reuters

 

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