Prolonged high temperatures in China are threatening power grids and crops and raising concerns about a repeat of last year’s drought, the most severe in 60 years.
Typhoon Talim was gaining strength and due to make land at night along China’s southern coast, forcing the cancellation of flights and trains in the regions of Guangdong and Hainan.
In a resumption of diplomacy on global warming between the two superpowers, US climate envoy John Kerry met Chinese counterpart Xie Zhenhua in Beijing, urging joint action to cut methane emissions and coal-fired power.
Asia, Europe and much of the United States baked under extreme heat on Monday as global temperatures soared toward alarming highs and US leaders sought to reignite climate diplomacy with China.
“In the next three days, we hope we can begin taking some big steps that will send a signal to the world about the serious purpose of China and the United States to address a common risk, threat, challenge to all of humanity created by humans themselves,” Kerry said, noting the proliferation of storms and fires.
“It is toxic for both Chinese and for Americans and for people in every country on the planet.”
The US was scorched by record-setting heat in the west and south, lashed with flood-triggering rain in the northeast, and choked by wildfire smoke in the midwest.
A heat dome parked over the western US pushed the temperature in California’s Death Valley desert to 53 degrees on Sunday, and kept daily highs in Phoenix on track to exceed 43 degrees through the week.
Even as nearly a quarter of the US population fell under extreme heat advisories, heavy rains devastated the state of Vermont and parts of Pennsylvania, where flash floods killed five people and swept away cars over the weekend.
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