The record rainfall has caused widespread disruption across Henan, home to the world’s biggest production base for iPhones
Around 100,000 people have been evacuated from the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou, as record rainfall caused widespread flooding and economic disruptions to Henan province, home to the world’s biggest production base for iPhones and a major hub for food production and heavy industry, reports Bloomberg.
Just days before the devastating floods, Henan endured heatwaves that swept across several industrial regions, threatening power outages.
Scientists at the China Meteorological Administration attributed the storm to strong and sustained subtropical high-pressure systems that, along with Typhoon In-fa approaching South China, pushed water vapor from the sea to Henan.
When that dense air hit the mountains surrounding the region, it converged and shot upwards, causing concentrated rainfall.
“It takes time and research to make a conclusion about the links between all these extreme weather events and climate change,” said Ma Jun, director at the Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs in Beijing. But China has seen more days with extreme rains since the 1960s, he said, and cities “have to be prepared to face similar disasters.”
He added that China needs to better prepare for such catastrophic events by improving weather monitoring and its ability to convey warnings and information quickly.
According to rating agency Moody’s, property and casualty insurers face increased volatility because of climate-related issues, with Chinese insurance providers particularly vulnerable because of their relatively low levels of reinsurance coverage.