Saturday, June 14, 2008

Today's edition: You've GOT to be kidding!

Upon sitting down with my bagel and coffee this fine Saturday morning, where the weather is a bit heavy and slightly overcast (as weather sometimes is), I opened my newly arrived July/August issue of Dwell (one of my most fav. mags), flipped through the pages and stopped on page 56. Olympic Climatology. I searched for the article online, but have not found a link (they haven't posted their new issue to the website yet), so here are a few excerpts:
"Though the Olympics are supposed to be all about the athletes, this year everyone's eyes are on the sky as the Chinese government experiments with urban weather control. For the 2008 Games, the Beijing Meteorological Bureau is using repurposed military equipment, including rockets and anti-aircraft guns, together with an IBM supercomputer and dedicated satellite imaging to stop bad weather before it forms. At least that's what they hope to do: Whether it will work remains to be seen."
"Government meteorologists and their assistant climate scientists claim that they can now change the size and shape of falling raindrops for any clouds overhead - and, through the use of special cloud additives, lock the water vapor in place. Clouds, if they aren't prevented entirely, will simply drift over the roofs of Beijing, holding their rain in check. And this is no pacifist effort. Figures released by the China Meteorological Administration indicate that an incredible 7,113 anti-aircraft guns; 4,991 retrofitted rocket launchers; and no fewer than 32,000 employees have been pressed into service on this atmospheric battlefront."
If you visit: "Regulations on Administration of Weather Modification" you'll find the 2002 law where the Chinese government gives the Chinese Government permission to do this. It's scary if you ask me. I guess The Simpson's weren't so far off with Mr. Burns diabolical sun blocking contraption.


  1. I think the Russians did sth similar years and years ago... also for the Olympics, I think.

  2. Mr. Burns popped into my head too when I read about that. Part of me wants it to work because it could be used for good but in reality if it works it just means we'll have a new bill to pay, the monthly weather bill with added $25 connection fee. HeeHee!


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