Friday 3 July 2015

Cloud Seeding

Why in news?
Amid growing fears of another drought year, Maharashtra has revived talk of cloud seeding.

What is cloud seeding?

Critical Analysis 

  • Cloud seeding also depends heavily on environmental conditions like temperature and cloud composition.
  • In 2003, United States National Academy of Sciences declared that 30 years of studies had not produced “convincing” evidence that weather modification works.
    • On the other hand, the American Meteorological Society claims that some studies on cloud seeding show a 10 percent increase in rain volume
  • Concerns also remain about exposure to silver iodide toxicity and soil contamination.
  • Cloud seeding is quite expensive, though potentially cheaper than other projects, like diverting rivers, building new canals or improving irrigation systems. Then again, the allure of cloud seeding may redirect attention and funding from other projects that could be more promising.
  • Then there are questions about altering weather. Are some areas taking moisture out of the air that would have fallen as rain in another region
  • And if regions are experiencing drought due to climate change, isn’t effort better spent tackling the causes of global warming?

Conclusion: Cloud seeding has strong supporters, but it remains controversial.


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