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Kunming government worried about drought repeat

By in Features on

This time last year, Kunming's days were sunny and pleasant with no rain. But there was a dark lining to the weeks and months of cloudless mornings and sun-drenched afternoons, as these were the early days of Kunming's worst drought in a century.

After starts and stops, Kunming has finally been getting some rain. So far this year, Kunming has received 25 percent more rain than the same period last year, with surrounding rural counties receiving slightly more, but officials say that's not enough.

Municipal water officials said that the recent rains that have fallen on Kunming and surrounding areas have generally been short and spotty, which has made it difficult for streams to form and flow into reservoirs.

Furthermore, when this year's first rains arrived, the city's water reserves were almost completely depleted – not a good situation for a city of five million.

This year's rains are not over, but the current water situation is not reassuring. As of October 9, Kunming had total water reserves of 1.03 billion cubic meters, or 94.19 million cubic meters less than last year.

The Songhuaba Reservoir north of Kunming is 28.1 percent less full now than one year ago, and the Yunlong Reservoir has 28.8 percent less water than in October of last year.

Unlike last year, city officials are openly discussing water supply concerns and calling for better water management strategies. Given today's news that Kunming is planning on absorbing 1.2 million residents from the surrounding countryside in the coming decade, improving local water management has become even more urgent.

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Just moved to Kunming and have been downright depressed by the frequent rain and/or threat thereof.

Noted this to my real estate agent, and he said so much rain this season is quite unnatural. And he was emphatic: some recent rain (particularly short periods of rainfall preceded by and followed by bright sun) is "obviously" chemically induced, i.e., "man-made."

Is this so?

Yes, the government has supposedly once again turned to cloud seeding over the past few months as an antidote to this year's relatively dry late may through August rainy season.

At least this has been an explanation offered in many Chinese-language media articles about why the autumn has been so rainy in comparison to the meager rainy season.

Such a shame that the 12.7 billion cubic meters of fresh water in Dianchi lake wasn't considered important enough to worry about until it was too late.

but on the other hand if the government needs a lot of raw material for chemical warfare then they have it in Dianchi.

Such a shame the locals won't pray to me in order to get some more rain. It's not that difficult, I've been doing it a lot in Guangdong and Hainan Island lately for fun. I never knew so many of my dad's Chinese creations couldn't swim!

I'm off to go set off a volcano or something. Later peasants!

Get back to work Jesus. Them dead aint gonna resurrect themselves ya know, and while you're at it: How's that "feeding the poor" thing coming along? With those Multiplying Fish skills and scrolls of Water-into-wine it really shouldn't be much of a problem. Did you just take a 2 millennia break you slacker?!

Yeah, about feeding the poor.
To be honest, I've been kind of on hiatus ever since World of Warcraft came out. I spend most of my time on it.

My bad on the previous 2,000 years. Getting nailed to a cross isn't easy my disciples...and all that WoW is giving my wrists some horrible carpal tunnel!

I can't believe you guys can mock religion in times when people die because of droughts.

I can't believe you are failing to maintain a a sense of humour at a time when the world is going to hell in a handbasket.

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