Natural disasters affect 170 million Chinese in first quarter

15:36, April 12, 2011      

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In the first quarter of 2011, natural disasters affected a total of 170 million people across China, causing 75 deaths, 11 missing persons and the evacuation of 819,000, according to information released by the Ministry of Civil Affairs on April 8.

Various types of natural disasters also affected 113,801 square kilometers of farmland, resulting in 2,818 square kilometers without crop yield. Natural disasters also toppled 113,000 houses and damaged 381,000. The disasters resulted in 48 billion yuan in direct economic losses.

The MCA and the China National Committee for Disaster Reduction recently held a disaster reduction meeting to analyze and evaluate the national natural disasters in the first quarter of 2011. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Land and Resources, the Ministry of Railways, the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Water Resources also participated.

Analysis and evaluation concluded that the primary natural disasters of China in the first quarter 2011 are mainly drought, low temperatures and freezing rain and snow as well as earthquakes. Some areas also suffered other disasters, such as floods, hail, landslides and mudslides, forest fires, plant diseases and insect pests. The disaster situation was basically at the same level as the same period of previous years.

The main winter wheat-producing areas, such as Shandong Province and Henan Province, suffered autumn and winter drought to varying degrees.

Ten provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities), such as Guizhou, Hunan and Chongqing suffered low temperatures and freezing rain and snow, and some areas also experienced large-scale frozen roads and power lines.

Lives of local people were affected and the serious sea-ice disaster in the Bohai Sea and the Yellow Sea brought an adverse impact on fishery production. Southwestern China experienced frequent seismic activities.

The 5.8-magnitude earthquake in Yingjiang County, Yunnan Province resulted in many casualties and the 7.2-magnitude earthquake in Burma also caused some damage to places such as Xishuangbanna in Yunnan Province.

By People's Daily Online
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