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Life & Culture > Environment
Is weather modification stopping rain in Lagos?
By
July 31, 2012 01:20:50am GMT
Cloudy at the beach

By David Stephen-- It’s been light showers over the last 3 weeks around parts of Lagos Mainland and Lagos Island, against the experiences of downpour prior to this time. Remarkably, things changed after the commencement of maintenance works on third mainland bridge, and public suspicion over possible weather manipulation has grown.

It has also been cold, and rainfall is hardly expected, as it comes in very small amounts, or briefly. Rainfall and storms in Lagos, of recent, have not been friendly, it has induced floods that caused damages to lives and properties. It also contributes to traffic, with effects lasting over days.

A ‘no rain’ period at a time like this when rainfall was forecasted to peak, allows some suspicion into activities that may be ongoing to prevent rain. There was also a period of light rain last year, after a day of prolonged rain that ravaged the state in July. Continuous rain in that magnitude is obviously unbearable for the people and government, and it is just wise to have some stopgap for it.

High-winds-but-zero-rain period during rainy seasons in the past, have sometimes come with major construction in Lagos & elsewhere. During the construction of Yaba-Itire route, it was experienced over the mainland area, and was partly experienced during the construction of Funsho Williams Avenue.

The current rain absence, in a period of construction, is redolent of possible manipulation techniques in use. Weather Modification is an act of intentional manipulation or altering the weather. It has a number of techniques, and can be used for rain, snow and storms, to induce, reduce or prevent them. It is famously used in China, and developed nations have programs or research on it.

Weather modification techniques deals with clouds, which for rain and snow, is a factor. Clouds are seeded (or filled) with particles in a process called cloud seeding. It can be done with rockets and planes to load clouds with silver iodide or dry ice (liquid nitrogen), to have precipitation over rivers or other areas.

This process makes rain, fall from cloud, before those clouds get to an area. So rainfall could be induced over the Atlantic, to prevent it from falling in given areas that may be harmful to current construction work on third mainland bridge. China used weather modification during the Beijing Olympic games, and as rain is yet to really fall in the London games, you’ll never know.

Seniors in Nigeria speak of the possibility of weather modification in non-scientific ways, profiling certain cultural events that went without rain. This belief is predominant, and may be suggested by many as the cause for ‘no rain’ in Lagos. But doubts are there for any other method, aside scientific, that could hold off rain over an area for an extended period, reliably.

Nigeria may not have an issue with preventing rain, especially for a major construction work, but the issue the country may have is shrouding such programs in secrecy. Meteorologists and climate pundits in the academe, should have works on this, and see how it can benefit parts of Nigeria with drought or devastating downpour annually; because the construction people may never let their secrets until prompted.

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