China braces for icy weather

2010-01-11 16:07

kalahari.com

  • Chinese Culture
    Read all you need to know about the Chinese culture in this insightful title. Now R447.00
    buy now

Beijing - Northern China braced for another blast of frigid air on Monday, as coal shortages neared "alarming" levels due to surging power use amid a prolonged cold snap, the government and state media reported.

The new cold front is expected to send temperatures plummeting - to as low as minus 35ºC in northern Heilongjiang province - for much of the week, the central weather bureau said.

Icy weather has gripped northern China since the start of the year, with heavy snows snarling air, road and rail traffic last week, and the diving mercury causing a spike in power use.

The situation has crimped power supplies as weather-related transport bottlenecks have disrupted coal shipments to power stations.

The National Power Dispatch and Communication Centre said that as of Sunday coal reserves at 205 power plants had dwindled to the "alarming" seven-day supply level, Xinhua news agency reported.

Rationing

It said another 598 major power plants had seen reserves fall to nine-day supplies.

The situation has caused several provinces and regions to ration electricity or take other power-saving moves to reduce strain on electricity grids.

Xinhua said Shanxi, Shandong, Henan, and Hubei provinces as well as the huge southwestern municipality of Chongqing were still rationing as of Sunday.

Temperatures in Beijing - which hit its lowest point since 1971 last week - were forecast to drop to lows of -15ºC by Tuesday before edging up to highs of around 0ºC on Friday, the central weather bureau said.

The government was rushing tents and other relief supplies to the northwestern Xinjiang region after heavy snow killed one person and forced the evacuation of nearly 5 500 others, Xinhua said at the weekend.

Black market

Snowstorms which raged until Friday also "flattened" 799 houses and damaged nearly 5 000 others, it had said.

The spike in energy demand has resulted in a 15% increase in coal prices in north China compared with a month ago, the Beijing News reported.

Production in China's major coal region of Shanxi has fallen due to the widespread closure of mines under a new safety reform plan, further pushing prices upwards, the Yangcheng Evening News said.

But due to the shortages and rising prices, people were seeking cheaper coal from small mines, the paper said, indicating that a black market for the fossil fuel was already developing and mines were opening illegally.

Meanwhile, coal transport prices fluctuated wildly, rising 12.4% at the Shanghai Shipping Trade Centre last week when shipments were hampered by snow before falling by more than 11% this week, the Beijing Times said.

According to Xinhua news agency, the cold snap has resulted in the most severe sea ice in north and eastern China in three decades, with ice breakers scampering to keep sea lanes free and navigable.

A large portion of the coal from north China is shipped to the south by sea.

Read more on:    china  |  weather  |  economy
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
 

DA wants to empower fishing communities - Zille

DA leader Helen Zille says the party has a plan for harbours and small-scale fishing communities.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Somerset West - 08:57 AM
    Road name: N2 Outbound
    DELAYS through Somerset West due to high volumes
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold 9780

BlackBerry 6 Engage your world with BlackBerry 6 OS on the...

From R3049.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.