China renews yellow alert for high temperatures

World Saturday 23/July/2022 08:23 AM
China renews yellow alert for high temperatures

Beijing: China's national observatory on Saturday issued a yellow alert for high temperatures as intense heat waves linger in many regions of the country.

During daylight hours on Saturday, parts of Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang, Anhui, Jiangsu, Shanghai, Hunan, Jiangxi, Zhejiang, Fujian, Guizhou, Guangdong and Guangxi are expected to experience temperatures of over 35 degrees Celsius, Xinhua news agency reported citing the National Meteorological Center said. Temperatures in parts of Xinjiang, Zhejiang and Fujian may surpass 40 degrees Celsius, the centre said.

The centre advised against outdoor activities during high-temperature periods in the afternoon and suggested workers exposed to high temperatures or who need to work for a long time outdoors take necessary protective measures.

China has a four-tier colour-coded weather warning system, with red representing the most severe warning, followed by orange, yellow and blue.

World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary-General last week warned that heatwaves will happen more frequently because of climate change, adding that the connection has been clearly demonstrated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC).

After the UK broke an all-time high record, Petteri Taalas said, "In the future, this kind of heatwaves are going to be normal. We will see stronger extremes. We have pumped so much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere that the negative trend will continue for decades. We haven't been able to reduce our emissions, globally."

"I hope that this will be a wake-up call for governments and that it will have an impact on voting behaviours in democratic countries", he said.

According to IPCC, temperatures will rise more quickly in European areas than elsewhere.

In the Mediterranean, a worrisome combination of climatic impact-driver changes (warming; temperature extremes; increase in droughts and aridity; precipitation decrease; wildifire increase; mean and extreme sea levels; snow cover decrease; and wind speed decrease) is expected by mid-century if global warming exceeds 2°C.

The IPCC Special Report on Extremes also shows that heatwaves will be more frequent, longer and more intense in the 21st century. Early warning systems and reinforced health systems will be needed.

"Stable, stagnant atmosphere traps atmospheric pollutants, including particulate matter, resulting in a degradation of air quality. Sun rays lead to ozone formation. Both impact health, particularly among vulnerable people, and also impact vegetal life", said Bob Stefanski.

Health systems are challenged by heatwaves. "When a heatwave goes along with high levels of pollution it exacerbates respiratory, cardiovascular diseases and conditions, especially in large urban spaces that are not adapted to cope with these high temperatures," said Maria Neira, Director of Environment and Health at WHO.

"We have been alerting for a long time that climate change is severely affecting human health and therefore taking measures to reach the zero carbon and accelerating the transition to clean renewable sources of energy will be extremely important."