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China Heat Wave Sends Temperatures to Six-Decade High, Kills 2

A heat wave across 16 provinces in China has killed at least two people as temperatures in the northern port of Tianjin rose to the highest for any day in July in six decades yesterday.

Temperatures in Beijing and parts of Hebei and Shandong provinces are forecast to be as high as 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) in the next three days, according to the China Metrological Administration. Hot weather in Tianjin is forecast to moderate in the next three days after temperatures rose to as high as 40.7 degrees yesterday, the hottest in July since 1951, the weather agency said.

A 27-year-old man died at Beijing’s train station yesterday because of the heat, which has caused the hospitalization of 59 people in the capital since Saturday, the Beijing Times reported. Electricity and water use both rose to records in Beijing yesterday, the newspaper said, citing an unidentified official with the city’s electricity company.

“China’s power consumption will likely peak in July because the scorching weather is forcing more use of air-conditioning,” Zhang Shun, an analyst with Ping An Securities Co., said by phone from Beijing today.

Temperatures at 34 weather monitoring stations in the provinces of Heilongjiang, Jilin, Inner Mongolia and Xinjiang hit records from June 1 to July 4, People’s Daily said. A resident of the southern city of Shenzhen who was more than 70-years old, died on a local street last week, the Shenzhen News reported July 3.

Production Cuts

The eastern Chinese province of Zhejiang ordered more than 1,000 companies in energy-intensive industries including papermaking and metal smelting to halt or cut production for 15 days starting from this month in order to increase electricity supplies to residential users, the Zhejiang Online News reported on July 2, citing a local government meeting.

The Shanghai Wild Animal Park installed air conditioners for the 10 panda bears housed there during the city’s World Expo, China Daily reported. China’s financial hub is forecast to have temperatures of as high as 33 degrees today and 35 degrees tomorrow, according to the weather agency.

Temperatures in Beijing exceeded 40 degrees yesterday for the third time in July since the city began keeping records, the weather agency said. The city posted a high of 41.9 degrees in July 1999 and 41.1 degrees in July 2002, it said.

Temperatures in Tianjin are forecast for a high of 36 degrees today and 33 degrees tomorrow, according to the agency.

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