October 3, 2022

China’s Economic Hub Goes Dark

Shanghai has switched off decorative lighting amid soaring electricity demand the result of a heatwave

The lights are off on Shanghai’s riverfront skyscrapers and other buildings that provide China’s economic hub the iconic look.

City authorities have said the measure is aimed at alleviating pressure on the national grid among soaring electricity consumption the result of a heatwave.

Within a statement released on Sunday, officials announced that “ landscape lighting ” in the city’s famous Bund district would be switched off for two days starting on Monday. The same measure will affect billboards and video screens on both sides of the Huangpu River, the city authorities cleared up.

The decision arrives amid an ongoing heatwave which has hit several provinces within China and sent electrical power consumption surging. With temps reaching a sweltering 45 levels Celsius (113 degrees F), increased use of air conditioners offers pushed power demand up considerably. Moreover, water ranges in parts of the Yangtze River, China’s key inland waterway, have fallen significantly, putting yet more stress on the hydroelectric plants that offer electricity to some of China’s most developed and power-consuming economic centers.

So grave is the circumstance that on Sunday the authorities in the southwestern Sichuan province extended for 4 more days a formerly imposed power rationing system for industrial consumers.

“ Since July of this year, the state has faced the most severe high temperatures, the lowest rain fall in the corresponding period in history… and   the best power load in history, ” officials explained.

The decision has seen many car factories, including those operated by Toyota plus Elon Musk’s Tesla, stop production, as reported by Chinese news outlet Caixin.

Some specialists have already warned that the power cuts in Sichuan could affect global supply stores, given that the province is also home to some major components manufacturers.

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