- Every year for over half a millennium has been a flood year in China, but climate change and rapid urbanization could make this perennial problem even more treacherous.
In the summer of 2020, a large chunk of China was inundated with the most severe flooding the country has seen in years.
The deluge came just as China was beginning to return to some semblance of normal after the country had gotten control of the coronavirus within its borders.
Millions of people had to rush to evacuate and leave their homes behind, and businesses that were teetering after the pandemic were dealt another haymaker.
In China, like much of the world, seasonal flooding is common, as spring and summer downpours bulge rivers and overwhelm riverbanks, oversaturating the usually-dry soil nearby.
But China has two of the world’s 10 longest rivers – the Yangtze and the Yellow rivers – that flow entirely within its borders. No other country has even one, although the Russian Lena River comes close.