Covid-19, Floods and Bank Runs: China Braces As Heavy Rainfall Stresses Water Management Infrastructure

A torrential downpour which has lasted over a month is testing China’s vast river flood control infrastructure, and threatening residents of Hubei Province, whose capital is Wuhan.

China’s flood defence network put to the test as it braces for more storms

Almost 20 million people living along the Yangtze River have been affected since late May, with at least 121 killed or missing

Engineer says if severe flooding, torrential rain persist it’s unclear how effective the dams will be

Shanghai Floods 2007
Shanghai Floods 2007. lauraelizabeth / CC BY

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When It Rains It Pours, China Edition

By John Rubino – Re-Blogged From Silver Phoenix

The US has its share of problems right now (see One Crisis Is Manageable. Five Might Not Be).

But China is right up there in the “when it rains it pours” sweepstakes. As the apparent source of the covid-19 pandemic, it’s still battling new cases and may yet be blamed for not just spawning the virus but consciously designing and then releasing it. It’s also battling unrest in Hong Kong, saber-rattling with Taiwan, and navigating a complex trade war with the US.

But those things might pale next what’s happening with the massive Three Gorges dam. Rain has been falling almost non-stop for weeks in Southern China, and floods – much worse than usual for this time of year – have inundated cities and towns (including covid-19 epicenter Wuhan) along the Yangtze River. The New York Times  describes this combination of pandemic and flooding as “surreal and difficult”.

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