Typhoon Behind China’s Deadly Floods Barrels Toward Key Oil Hub
(Bloomberg) -- A powerful typhoon that’s currently off the east coast of China is set to bear down on one of the country’s biggest oil hubs, just days after it contributed to devastating floods across the central Henan province.
In-fa is expected to make landfall in Zhejiang province this weekend. The island of Zhoushan, where some of the nation’s largest oil storage tanks and biggest refineries are located, sits on its projected path. The local meteorological agency raised its warning to the second-highest “orange” level and advised authorities to make full preparation and emergency plans.
At least 33 people have been killed with hundreds of thousands evacuated after floodwaters inundated Henan this week. The combined effects of the typhoon’s airflows and sustained subtropical high-pressure systems contributed to the record deluge that swamped the province. Henan is more than 1,000 kilometers northwest of Zhejiang, one of China’s wealthiest and most developed regions.
Zhejiang Petroleum & Chemical Co. operates one of China’s newest and most sophisticated oil complexes in Zhoushan, while Sinopec Group’s largest plant -- Zhenhai -- is also located nearby. The region houses dozens of storage tanks that make up the strategic petroleum reserves, as well as ship-refueling docks.
Peak typhoon season in China typically lasts from July to September each year. In-fa, the first major storm to hit east China in 2021, could develop into a super typhoon, according to the meteorological agency.
Local authorities in Zhengzhou, a city in Henan, urged utility companies to resume city-wide power supply by Friday. Measures are also being taken to ensure the health and safety of its residents as floodwaters recede. So far no outbreak of infectious diseases have been reported, according health officials.
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