1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites

China hit by deadly flooding and extreme heat at same time

June 17, 2024

Southern regions have been hit by torrential rain and flooding while high temperatures bake northern China. There have been reports that four have been killed in a landslide in Fujian province.

A flooded street in Dongping Township of Zhenghe County, Nanping City, southeast China's Fujian Province
Torrential rains have forced the evacuation of 36,000 people in southeast China's Fujian ProvinceImage: Huang Jiemin/Xinhua/picture alliance

Large parts of China have been put on alert for extreme weather as sweltering heat threatens drought in the north while at the same time, southern regions have been battered by heavy rain and flooding.

State television reported on Monday that flooding in the southern province of Guangxi had caused total economic damage of around 329 million yuan ($45 million, €42 million) after it blocked transport routes and impacted homes and crops.

Farmland in Fujian province has already suffered direct losses of around $225 million across 12,350 hectares.

The capital Beijing has issued its second-highest heat warning, with temperatures expected to exceed 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit) on Monday.

China struggles with extreme rain and heat

Deaths reported after landslide in Fujian province

Local media reported that around 11,000 in need of vital assistance in Guangxi had to be relocated from flooded streets in rubber dinghies while elderly people had to be carried through the flood waters.

Another 11,100 in Guangdong were evacuated from areas near dykes as a precautionary measure.

The Reuters news agency cited state broadcaster CCTV in a report that a landslide in Fujian province left four people dead and another two missing after seven days of heavy rain.

Authorities in the province evacuated around 36,000 people due to flooding as rains were expected to continue beyond Monday.

Rain storms with severe downpours of more than 70 millimeters per hour were forecast in southeastern and western provinces on Monday.

Rescuers inspect flood drainage in Wuyishan, Nanping City, southeast China's Fujian Province
Days of heavy rains have wreaked havoc in many parts of Fujian, which has declared emergency response to rainstormsImage: /Xinhua/picture alliance

Sweltering conditions in northern China

Meanwhile, northern China, including the capital Beijing, has endured high temperatures for the past week with hot conditions expected to persist.

The National Meteorological Center issued a heat warning and forecast maximum temperatures of around 39 degrees Celsius for Monday in parts of Beijing and nearby areas and in the Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia regions to the west.

Temperatures are expected to rise even further in some parts on Tuesday with highs of 40 degrees Celsius.

A woman uses a fan to block from the sun as she walks in Beijing
China is being hit by two weather extremes, with heavy rain and flooding in parts of the south and a heat wave and potential drought in the northImage: Andy Wong/AP Photo/picture alliance

Low rainfall in northern China has prompted concern over the impact it is having on agricultural production.

China's vice premier, Liu Guozhong, called for drought prevention measures on Saturday during an inspection tour of Hebei province, which borders Beijing.

Liu said that water resources should be allocated in a scientific manner and the conservation of water for farming should be strengthened, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

China has experienced extreme weather events over recent years which experts say are linked to rising global temperatures caused in large part by carbon emissions. 

Climate change is also believed to be behind recent deadly heatwaves in India and South-East Asia.

kb/ab (dpa, Reuters)