Drone video shows China's drying 'kidney' lake

STORY: Drone footage taken on Sunday (August 28, 2022) shows the dramatic impact of a long drought and heatwave on a vital part of the country's irrigation infrastructure.

Poyang is known as the "kidney" because of the role it plays in regulating the flow of the Yangtze river in the southeastern province of Jiangxi, taking on floodwaters in the normally wet summer and then receding dramatically during the dry autumn and winter.

This year, as a record heatwave throughout the Yangtze basin stretches beyond 70 days, the lake has shrunk far earlier than usual and is just a fifth of its size of a few months ago.

Villagers and tourists were able to walk comfortably on the cracked and baked flats of the lake, treading through dead mussels and fish.