February 23, 2024

China’s harvest is under “serious peril” from the greatest heatwave on record

China's harvest is under "serious peril" from the greatest heatwave on record

CHONGQING: Authorities in China have warned that the country’s autumn harvest is “severely threatened” by drought and high temperatures, and they pledged on Wednesday to take new measures to safeguard crops in the face of the nation’s warmest summer on record.

This summer’s record heat, flash floods, and droughts have taken a toll on the second-largest economy in the world, occurrences that scientists warn are becoming more regular and severe due to climate change.According to the agriculture ministry, Southern China has had the longest stretch of consecutively high temperatures since records have been kept more than 60 years ago.

To safeguard crops, four government departments recommended saving of “every unit of water.”China produces more than 95% of the rice, wheat, and maize it eats; nevertheless, a smaller harvest may result in a greater need for imports in the world’s most populous nation, placing additional strain on already-stressed global supplies due to the crisis in Ukraine.

The government reportedly allocated 10 billion yuan ($1.45 billion) to assure healthy rice harvests this autumn.Premier Li Keqiang presided over a meeting of Beijing’s State Council when it was decided the government should “perform an even better job in battling and decreasing drought.”In order to combat the drought, officials also urged “a mix of steps to improve water sources, first ensure drinking water for the people, and ensure water for agricultural irrigation.

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