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Project Varshadhare launched by Karnataka Government

Project Varshadhare launched by Karnataka Government

The Karnataka government has launched the Varshadhare project to conduct cloud seeding.

On March 8, the Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Department pushed a tender call for cloud seeding operations to enhance rainfall during the monsoons of 2019 and 2020.

The project is expected to cost ₹50 crore each year.

What is cloud seeding?

Cloud seeding is a weather modification experiment to increase precipitation and induce rainfall from rain-bearing clouds.

Usually, a mixture of silver iodide, potassium iodide and dry ice (solid carbon dioxide) is sprayed into clouds from an aircraft flying over them.

According to a report filed by the evaluation team, the cloud seeding exercise generated around 2.51 tmc of additional rainfall – which is roughly around 28% above the normal rainfall level.

The Karnataka government had announced the Varshadhaare cloud seeding project in 2017, and carried out cloud seeding trial runs between August 21 and November 10 over three river basins – Cauvery, Malaprabha and Tungabhadra – after the state witnessed deficient rainfall. 

Several Indian states have experimented with cloud seeding including Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh.

However, the results have not been as satisfactory.  

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