PureInsight | September 23, 2002
Since early 2002, China has been hit hard by continuous abnormal disasters. According to a summary report of the first half of the year by meteorologists at the China State Meteorological Administration, the disasters caused by abnormal weather were not limited to local or small areas, but rather prevailed all over China. Meteorologists say that sporadic natural disasters impacting all of China are very rare at this time of year.
According to meteorologists, weather conditions during the first half of 2002 were extremely volatile and unpredictable. China was hit by a spring drought followed by floods. Most areas frequently experienced continuous heat, thunderstorms, hail and hurricanes. Strong sandstorms prevailed over large areas. During the past spring, 12 sandstorms swept across China, composed of one sand gust, seven sandstorms, and four severe sand tornados. These sandstorms were far more intense in terms of their force, length of time period, and affected areas, than those during the same period of last year.
From January to March 2002, very low rainfall and continuous rise in the temperatures of China’s major agricultural areas lead to early spring droughts in a large number of areas. Some areas experienced drought from last winter till mid-May. In some areas, no precipitation occurred for about 200 days. The winter droughts continued into the spring, a very rare phenomenon---unheard of for the last several decades. In Guangdong province alone 1,300 dams have dried up because of the continuous dry weather.
From April to June 2002, there was frequent rainfall of uneven distribution in most areas of China. Though the drought conditions were relieved to some extent, some areas experienced floods. From the second half of April to the first half of May, the middle to the downstream of the Yangtze River was bracing itself in a steady drizzle. Some areas were hit by heavy torrential rains and impacted by floods. At the Dongting and Boyang lakes, heavy rainfall caused the water to rise past their upper limits. Yili District of the autonomous Xinjiang region experienced medium to heavy precipitations. Tornados hit some places of Hunan, Zhejiang, Hubei and Anhui provinces. Some areas were seriously damaged by sudden strong hurricanes, thunderstorms and hailstorms.
During June 2002, three heavy rainfalls hit China. On June 6th and 12th, a heavy rainstorm swept “North” China. Severe flooding affected Shaanxi, Sichuan, Chuongqing, Hubei and Guizhou provinces. Southern Shaanxi province was hit the hardest. On June 10th and 17th, heavy rainfall soaked the central south region of “South” China to the Yangtze River, the central north region of “South” China, and the east region of “Southwest” China, which caused the water level of several rivers (Guangxi Liu, Hunan Xiang, Jiangxi Gan, Fu and Fujian Min) to rise past their flood warning marks. On the 19th and 30th of June, a torrential rain swept the northern region of Jiangnan province, and the Hanjiang and Jianghuai areas, which resulted in heavy flooding in some areas. In addition, during the last ten days of June, some areas of “North” China, and the Yellow and Huai rivers in northeast China experienced cold weather and continuous drizzles. The “Plum Rain” that normally is seen only in “South” China was visible in a soaked Beijing. [Editor’s note: The Plum Rain refers to the rainy season in early summer when plums are ripening in southeastern China.]
Since July, the weather in China continues to be volatile and unpredictable. Continuous heat and heavy rainfalls characterize the weather. Floods, streams of mud and rocks, hurricanes, and hailstorms, without any warning signs, bombarded some areas. From July 1st to July 3rd, most areas of China were enveloped by heavy rain. The northwest, northeast, north, southwest, central China, east, and southeast China experienced continuous precipitations. Rainfall in most areas significantly exceeded the amount during the same period of time of last year. China faced the worst flooding everywhere.
While the country was being hit by floods, east and central China, as well as Guangdong province were suffering from heat waves. In mid July, Beijing continuously basked in the worst heat wave in 50 years. The Beijing Meteorological Observatory reported that the highest temperature in July was 104 degrees Fahrenheit, which broke the record of the high temperature for Beijing in the last 40 years. On July 19, Zhenzhou city was attacked by a thunderstorm, a hurricane and egg-size hail. The 30-minute hailstorm brought severe damages. On July 4th, Harbin and Changchun cities were also attacked by hailstorms.
On August 1 and August 3, torrential rain poured on the mountainous area north of Beijing. Six villages in Shicheng Town, Miyun County and four sightseeing spots at Taoyuan Xiangu were hit by mud-and-rock flows. On August 4th, most areas of Jilin City in Jilin Province were severely damaged by floods. One of the cities in this area, Shulan city, had experienced the second severest flood since 1949 and suffered substantial losses. The tropical storm, Beimian, landed at East Guangdong province in the early morning of August 5th. Most areas of East Guangdong province suffered damages of various degrees.
Since August 11th, heavy rainfall again swept Hunan province from north to south. Heavy flooding of the Yangtze River resulted in an abrupt rise of water level in Dongting Lake. On the 22nd, the water level reached 34.6 meters, which exceeded the flood warning level by 1.6 meters. The water level at Chenglingji by Dongting Lake was expected to rise by eight o’clock on August 25 to about 35 meters, which would be the fourth highest record of water level in the lake’s history, and would threaten the lives of millions.
All these weather phenomena appear to be very rare and unusual. A rare warm winter led to winter droughts followed by spring drought. The Plum Rain, typical in the south of China, enveloped “North” China. Record-breaking high temperatures were accompanied by torrential rains and flooding. It was as though Yin and Yang lost their balance. Sudden hurricanes and hailstorms hit China with mysterious speed. Sand storms clouded the sky over China. As the saying goes, “When the weather is favorable [for raising crops], the country is prosperous and the people live in peace.” The converse is the case now. Severe disasters and natural calamities have prevailed throughout China in the last few years. Why? Man can ill afford committing crimes that violate the laws of Heaven. While the leaders of China have tried to stage shows of peace and prosperity, the Heavens have spoken through abnormal weather. What dark secrets could be lying underneath the flourishing economy in China? Behold! In the afternoon of July 29th, snowflakes fell on the town of Linzi , Zibo City (Shandong province). In addition, it snowed in Wenzhou on the afternoon of August 5th. Aren’t these weather conditions the most incomprehensible phenomena? What appalling crimes on earth could have provoked the celestial powers to display such heavenly rage?