Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Keeping The Party Cool

WSJ China Blog
Factories to Shut Down so Beijing Can Keep Cool

Cities around Beijing could have their electricity rationed to guarantee power to the capital this summer, state media reported.

Wang Yingjian told the Beijing Times that electricity demand has been hitting all-time highs as residents crank up air conditioning to escape record-setting heat waves. He said the city is asking 75 factories to stop production during peak hours and the cities of Tangshan, Zhangjiakou and three others in surrounding Hebei province face power rationing to redirect supplies to Beijing.

Power shortages aren’t uncommon in China, where demand keeps outstripping supply. And it’s not uncommon for China’s leaders to demand sacrifices of Beijing’s neighbors to make sure the capital runs smoothly. For example, water and natural gas are also rerouted to protect the capital.

Since I may be visiting Beijing next month, I wholeheartedly agree with this policy. As long as it doesn't affect the air conditioning use in Chengdu at the end of August (I'll be there first before traveling to Beijing).

I heard from Leon that it was almost 40°C in Chengdu. Ugh... :(

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