Cloud Seeding

Cloud seeding is a weather modification techniques which spray Silver Iodide, Sodium Chloride, and Potassium Chloride. These particles provide a base for water vapor to condense, water vapor then crystallizes and then falls as snow or rain.

Karnataka which is facing fourth consecutive drought year is using cloud-seeding under Project Varshadhari. The idea is to increase the amount of precipitation from the clouds, leading to higher chances of rain. This can enhance precipitation by at least 15-20%. Cloud seeding can help in mitigating the climate change to some extent. However, cloud seeding is not a panacea.

It is a reactionary approach to manipulate the weather. It can’t take the place of long-term sustainable solutions such as afforestation and increased water use efficiency. Harmful chemicals can have environmental consequences. The seeded cloud may travel to other locations and can have unintended consequences. Cloud seeding if not controlled properly can have undesirable weather conditions like floods, storms. Also, it is a very expensive method

Therefore steps like afforestation, sustainable agriculture, water conservation, clean energy should be promoted. There is a need of proactive instead of a reactionary approach to deal with climate change.

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