Cloud seeding feels like something out of a sci-fi story. Creating clouds? Changing Earth’s weather patterns? Playing God? That’s not exactly what cloud seeding is, though. With current technology, we don’t actually have the ability to create clouds or storms, we just have the ability to give existing clouds and storms a little boost.
Cloud seeding works by burning silver iodine through an ice nucleus generator and carrying those particles into the clouds, allowing snowflakes to form around the generated silver iodine particles. Basically, it allows water that wouldn’t normally fall out of a cloud to actually fall out of a cloud.
“Snowstorms are actually pretty inefficient at producing precipitation. All cloud seeding does is help improve a storm’s efficiency.” – President of North American Weather Consultants Garrett Cammans according to 9News
Still confused? Me too, don’t worry. I’m definitely not a scientist, and I’m even worse at explaining science than I am at understanding it, so rather than trying to make it clear through my writing, I’ll let the people’s meteorologist Chris Tomer explain it.
A new operation planned for Boulder County in Colorado could be the first of its kind on the front range of the state. Just west of Longmont, the seeding is set to take place along the St. Vrain headwaters beginning this winter. The organization at its helm, the North American Weather Consultants, hopes to produce an extra 10% of additional snowpack. Is that a ton? No, not really. It won’t save the planet, that’s for sure, but it does have the potential to increase the growing season in the area, create healthier soils, and even create more wildfire resistant land.
Image Credit: 9News via YouTube