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Henan's Massive Floods Trigger China's Climate Anxiety

Zhengzhou’s flood recovery is sparking discussions on climate change.
Henan's Massive Floods Trigger China's Climate Anxiety

Too busy to check in on the RADII website every day? We got you every Monday with a summary of all the freshest takes on China's youth culture in the last week:

Intrigued? Keep scrolling, my friend.

A Sign of Things to Come? Henan Flooding Triggers Climate Concerns

Public discussion and awareness of climate change is nothing new, and Millennials and Gen Zers, in particular, are intimately familiar with the dire predictions of human-caused climate change.

This discourse is alive and well in China this week as the nation grapples with the economic impact and human toll of catastrophic flooding in Central China’s Henan province — with a year’s worth of rain falling in just three days on some cities.

For years now, extreme weather events from hurricanes to high-temperature-induced wildfires have been credited to climate change, but there’s little doubt that 2021 feels like something of a wake-up call.

From late June to early July, record-breaking temperatures blanketed Western North America, resulting in deaths, damaged infrastructure, and vicious wildfires. At roughly the same time, parts of Russia and Eastern Europe were dealing with their own abnormally hot weather.

The deluge currently inflicting its wrath on Central China has so far resulted in 63 deaths, with five people still missing, according to State-backed English-language newspaper China Daily. Caused by heavy rainfall, the floods have displaced more than 900,000 people and affected 3 million people.

What's the relationship between climate change and the floods at Henan?

Culture recs for the week:
Taiwan-born DJ Sulk

If you’re based in China and into club music, you’ve probably heard of the Shenzhen nightclub Oil. If you’re not, here’s a brief intro: Oil is regarded as one of the best small clubs in the country these days.

The club has also built up a roster of regular DJs who’ve been gaining prominence throughout the club scene in China. And one of them is a 21-year old called Sulk.

This week, we would highly recommend this exclusive mix he’s made for us.

In case you missed it, here are some stories from last week:
  • Robots to the rescue? 118 ‘Dolphin No. 1’ surface rescue robots were deployed to help rescue teams in Henan:
  • The ongoing allegations against Rap of China judge Kris Wu have gotten him canceled by big brands.
  • China has officially banned livestreaming for those who are younger than 16 years old. Good call, right?
  • People are so obsessed with this tea that they’re hiring people to deliver them via high-speed rail. Is it even safe?
  • The year is 2021, and China is officially home to 44% of the world’s electric vehicles. (That’s triple the number of electric vehicles in the US.) How did we get here?
  • An unlikely shoe brand went viral over the weekend (for all the right reasons).
Our publicist shares some of the favorite things on her radar:
I'm a serial song looper. Currently, I've been sinking my teeth into "聖馬力諾之心" by Hong Kong pop band Dear Jane. The lyrical pep talk was inspired by the San Marino national soccer team, which is one of the worst-performing soccer teams in the world. San Marino is a humble European country of 33,000, and every player on the soccer team actually has a day job. And yet, they show up for practice everyday. It's a blood-pumping anthem that looks past arbitrary hiccups and rejections.

Last year, a viral meme exploded across the Chinese internet.

In a re-dubbed clip of two characters from ’80s anime Ai no Gakko Cuore Monogatari, one character bemoans being tired from work, the other excitedly declares that this was as it should be. “Leave being comfortable to those who have money,” the latter exclaims. “C’mon, worker!”

Denzel DeChosen goes into how else you can use the term 打工人 (dǎgōng rén) in this week’s Slang Dynasty:

Are you a gifted meme maker? Or a storyteller crazy about Chinese youth culture? Take a look below, because we’re currently hiring for the following positions:

- Business Development Director
- Social Media Specialist
- Videographer

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