What’s the news?
- The China’s Agriculture ministry stated that it will try to protect its grain harvest from record-setting drought by using chemicals to generate rain as factories in Sichuan province were shut down due to shortages of water to generate hydropower.
- Sichuan has been hardest hit by drought because it gets 80% of its power from hydroelectric dams. Around 819,000 people face a shortage of drinking water.
News in detail
- The hottest, driest summer since the government began recording rainfall and temperature 61 years ago has wilted crops and left reservoirs at half their normal water level.
- Authorities will “try to increase rain” by seeding clouds with chemicals and spraying crops with a “water retaining agent” to limit evaporation and to “ensure the autumn grain harvest,” which is 75% of China’s annual total production.
What is Cloud seeding?
- Cloud seeding is a type of weather modification that aims to change the amount or type of precipitation that falls from clouds by dispersing substances into the air that serve as cloud condensation or ice nuclei, which alter the microphysical processes within the cloud.
- The usual objective is to increase precipitation (rain or snow), either for its own sake or to prevent precipitation from occurring in days afterward.
- The most common chemicals used for cloud seeding include silver iodide,potassium iodine and dry ice (solid carbon dioxide).