Shanghai has turned off ornamental lighting due to a heatwave's increased demand for electricity.
The riverfront skyscrapers and other structures that give Shanghai its recognizable appearance are darkened. According to local officials, the move is intended to relieve pressure on the national system amid surging electricity usage brought on by a heatwave.
The city's renowned Bund sector will have no "landscape illumination" for two days starting on Monday, according to a statement issued by officials on Sunday. The city officials made it clear that the same restriction would apply to video displays and billboards on both sides of the Huangpu River.
The choice was made amid a persistent heatwave that has wracked numerous Chinese provinces and driven up electricity usage. Since more people are using air conditioners, there has been a significant rise in power demand as the temperature has climbed to a scorching 45 degrees Celsius (113 degrees F). Additionally, the Yangtze River's water levels have drastically decreased in some areas, which adds to the pressure on the hydroelectric plants that provide electricity to some of China's most advanced and energy-intensive economic hubs.
The situation is so critical that on Sunday, the government of the southwest Sichuan province extended a previously implemented power rationing plan for industrial consumers for a further four days.
The province has had the largest power demand in history, the lowest rainfall for the period in history, and the most extreme high temperatures since July of this year, according to officials.
According to the Chinese news portal Caixin, multiple auto plants, including those run by Toyota and Elon Musk's Tesla, have stopped production as a result of the decision.
Some experts have already warned that the power cuts in Sichuan could affect global supply chains, given that the province is also home to some major parts manufacturers.