Ministry of Ports and Shipping, Meteorology Department, Plants Protection Department (PPD) of Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC), Civil and Army aviations along with civic agencies in metropolitan city, have finalised arrangements for generating artificial rain in Karachi.
The Met office has started monitoring clouds entering Sindh from Rajisthan (India) and whenever the clouds with particular size
and thickness at certain height are found, the aircraft of PARC, and civil and army aviations will fly over and spray the selected
clouds with mix of sodium chloride and water.
By June 26 or 27, the weather phenomena will change and the city will receive rain.
This was informed by Chief Meteorologist Naeem Shah during a media briefing in the office of the Director General Ports and Shipping here on Tuesday.
Director General, Ports and Shipping, Abdul Malik Ghauri, a senior meteorologist Tayyab Arain, and representatives of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) and the business community were also present.
Naeem Shah said the technology for artificial rain called ‘cloud seeding’ is being successfully used in more than 50 countries including China, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and India wth China making its maximum use.
Pakistan has also used this technology in different periodsof time that is, 1958, 1968 and 2000 and had very good results, he said.
Tayyab Arain, a senior meteorologist and the field officer in Tharparkar said in 2000 artificial rain was generated and shovered there with average 30 mm, elaborated the cloud seeding.
He said this technology is very easy and very much affordable. Sodium chloride or silver iodide is mixed with water for spraying the clouds. Sodium chloride is preferred because of its being very low priced, he added.
He said there are low, medium and high level clouds. For cloud seeding, clouds at the height between 3000 to 4000 feet having reasonable thickness are required.
On identification of such clouds coming to Karachi, aircraft carrying mix of water and sodium chloride will fly and spray on their face which starts raining. Once this process starts, the clouds also clash with each other which creates a big rain system in that particular area, he said.
“Thicker the clouds, more chances of rain. The Met Office will inform about the arrival of the clouds and about their speed. The aircraft will target these,” he remarked adding that monsoon clouds do enter Sindh only from Rajisthan.
To a question, Arain said that during the coming monsoon season Sindh expected to receive 40 per cent less rain than the normal rain, which is 176 mm.
He shared his experience of 2001, when 30 mm rain was received in different areas of Tharparkar through cloud seeding.
He said once 3 or 4 experiences of cloud seeding are done over Karachi, it will generate a strong rain system due to extra cooling developed in the atmosphere for this reason. Then, the city will have more rain.
Director General of Ports and Shipping Abdul Malik Ghauri expressed satisfaction that a direction has been set to provide relief to the people from scorching heat.
He said this initiative has been taken by the Ministry of Ports and Shipping to provide relief to the people in Karachi from very hot weather continuing for last one week.
He said that his office has taken on board different federal and Sindh governments’ departments /agencies to do this great national and humanitarian job.
“Besides taking on board PARC, Met Office, CAA and Army Aviation, KMC and other civic agencies of Karachi on board, I have also talked to Commissioner Karachi”, he said.
“Next meeting might be held at the Commissioner House,” he added.
He said five aircraft of Plants Protection Department of PARC for pesticides spray on crops can be used for cloud seeding and if needed, the Civil and Army Aviations’ support can be sought.
He informed the media that UAE authorities have also been requested in this regard as they have always a good cloud seeding system ready.
“We are simply waiting for the availability of clouds for their seeding,” he said. (APP)