Rainy season came early to China this year and 97 rivers across the country are already exceeding warning levels as of Thursday, May 27, 2021. This represents a rise of about 10% compared to 2020, a record-breaking year when it comes to rainfall and floods. With rivers in parts of southern China already experiencing record highs and precipitation expected to rise further in the weeks ahead, authorities are fortifying flood defenses ahead of what looks to be yet another heavy flood season.
47 reservoirs along the Yangtze River basin have been prepared to relieve floods, said Wang Wei, an official with the flood and drought disaster prevention office of the Ministry of Water Resources, adding that most of them have been fully discharged.
The Three Gorges Reservoir was at 150.83 m (494.8 feet) as of Wednesday, May 26 and it is expected to fall under the flood limit before June 10, Wang said. The Yangtze River Water Resources Commission urged local authorities to be on 24-hour alert and set up a reporting system to cope with severe flood concerns.
Rivers in parts of southern China are already experiencing record highs and precipitation is expected to rise further in the coming weeks.
The Ministry of Water Resources said that China is likely to see floods in seven major river basins.
Cheng Xiaotao, the former head of the Institute of Flood Control and Disaster Reduction, reassured the public to have confidence in China's flood control capabilities.
The heaviest rainfall over the next 2 weeks is expected in southern China:
China has already seen a fair share of extreme weather events over the past 30 days, including destructive tornadoes and rapid temperature swings:
Featured image credit: TropicalTidbits, GFS