China Flooding: Over 100,000 People Evacuated in Southern China Amid Heavy Rain and Deadly Floodwaters

Flooding due to heavy rain has struck southern China in recent days, causing widespread destruction and casualties. The catastrophic weather event resulted in the evacuation of thousands of people and the deaths of several people with others still missing. The hardest hit is the southern province of Guangdong, where swollen rivers and deadly floodwaters both impacted urban and rural areas.

Southern China Flooding

China Flooding: Over 100,000 People Evacuated in Southern China Amid Heavy Rain and Deadly Floodwaters
(Photo : Photo by Jéan Béller on Unsplash)

As of Tuesday, April 23, at least four people have been reported dead with 10 others still missing after storms accompanied by heavy rain and flooding pummeled Guangdong. The southern China flooding killed three people in Zhaoqing City, while the other fatality was a rescuer in Shaoguan City, according to state media, citing local authorities.

Authorities said water from multiple rivers overflowed and they are monitoring “dangerously high” water levels. The riverine flooding is caused by several days of heavy rain across Guangdong, a coastal province in southeast China, bordering Hong Kong and Macau. While Guangdong has a relatively high elevation, it is part of the Pearl River delta, which is vulnerable to floods.

The East Asian nation issued its highest level of rainstorm warning, indicating that the amount of rainfall threatening the province is above average and can cause life-threatening risks. This is not the first time China experienced such extreme weather events. In recent years, the country had witnessed the occurrence of severe flooding rain, landslides, droughts, and record-breaking heat waves.

The incident came almost three years after an extreme rainstorm killed 302 people in the city of Zhengzhou in China’s Henan province in July 2021. According to a case study of the Zhengzhou flooding published in the journal Climate and Weather Extremes, researchers have linked climate change that is likely to increase similar extreme weather events in the coming decades.

Also Read: China Flooding Season: Flash-Flood Warning Raised as 4 Rivers Exceed Dangerous Levels

Is Climate Change to Blame?

Experts have attributed climate change as responsible for the destructive phenomenon in Guangdong. The China flooding event comes a week after heavy rain caused extreme flooding in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, the country’s worst storm or highest rainfall in 75 years. Over the past decade, scientists have warned that greenhouse gas emissions are aggravating the climate crisis.

Aside from coastal flooding caused by global warming-driven rising sea levels, inland terrestrial environments are still vulnerable to flooding rain. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), climate change is making unprecedented floods the “new normal,” adding that floods become more frequent due to extreme weather patterns caused by the global climate crisis.

In 2019, the United Kingdom is one of the examples of this emerging reality when the nation experienced a series of storms in October of that year. The unexpected storms resulted in severe flooding that is equivalent to one month of rain in just 48 hours, the UNEP reported. Aside from flooding, the climate alteration phenomenon is also intensifying other events such as drought.


Related Article: Southwest China Flooding, Heavy Rain: 15 People Died in Chongqing; 460,000 Residents Affected in Sichuan

© 2024 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.