Capital Weather Gang – Already Seen For China’s Weather Modification Program

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* The cold is coming: Full forecast | Saturday snow? | Weather December *

“Man-made snowstorm brings chaos to Beijing”
“Beijing covered in snow made by the Freak government”
“Rain Shell detonates a corpse”

Beijing receives its first snow of the season at the beginning of last month. Credit: Associated Press

Yes, even the last headline is real (later). The first two are among the stories from last month (here and here) when Beijing saw its first snowfall in 22 years and the heaviest in 54 years (around 7 to 8 inches). Perhaps more importantly, the heavy snow came as a total surprise to the affected population. The resulting devastation, much like that caused by blizzards in the DC area, included grumbling traffic, canceled flights, school closings and general dismay at having to deal with the l ‘unexpected.

For China’s weather modification program, this is again déjà vu. As we previously reported, Chinese officials claim to have prevented rain from spoiling the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony and caused the first snowfall last year by sowing clouds with Silver iodide launched by rockets.

What was true then is just as valid today. Namely, the recent surprise snow could very well have occurred naturally. China has yet to provide convincing evidence to the contrary. However, there is a new twist this time around.

With virtually all of the weather modification efforts, the biggest concern is the law of unintended consequences – that is, the inevitable possibility of direct and indirect consequences other than intended (for example, see # 12 here). Given the complex nature of weather, there is and always will be uncertainty in predicting the outcome of efforts to manipulate weather.

Indeed, Chinese scientists admitted that they were hampered by the latest snowstorm. The intention, they say, was to produce rain, and only rain, to alleviate the drought conditions. However, they were surprised by a sudden drop in temperature that allowed the precipitation to fall as snow.

Just imagine the reaction if Washingtonians experienced a repeat of the “surprise snowstorm” of January 24-25, 2000, and then found out after the fact that the storm was artificially caused. Not a pleasant thought.

And now, the exploding corpse: By chance, I came across an article from last year describing what must be the most incredible and morbid unintended consequence of China’s weather modification program. A man believed to be first dead after being struck by lightning was actually killed by an unexploded weather rocket. Apparently, the rocket shell lodged in the victim’s body and was not discovered until his body exploded during his cremation. In at least one tacit admission that the responsibility lay with the Chinese meteorological bureau, the victim’s family received the equivalent of about $ 15,000 in compensation.

Finally, perhaps in order not to be outdone from China, the mayor of Moscow has proposed to seed the clouds of the approaching storms to redirect the snowfall to regions outside Moscow and, thus, reduce the amount of snow falling on the Russian capital.

Hey, if something like this actually works, consider dividing the DC area into separate huts for snow lovers and those who hate snow.

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