Cloud seeding starts in Negros and Panay

An Air Force personnel stacks up salt in an aircraft for use in cloud-seeding. (Photo by UNIFED)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY – Negros and Panay islands will experience rain showers over the next two weeks as a result of the 15-day cloud-seeding operation that began Tuesday.

United Sugar Producers Federation (UNIFED) President Manuel Lamata announced that the rain in Bacolod on Tuesday was induced by the cloud-seeding operation conducted in the morning.

The base of operations in Silay City includes personnel from the Philippine Air Force and the Bureau of Soils, who have set up equipment to monitor cloud formation conducive for cloud seeding.

They gather satellite data to get GPS coordinates, which the pilots use to inject salt into identified clouds to produce artificial rain, crucial for sugar fields affected by the prolonged El Niño spell, Lamata said.

“We at UNIFED worked hard to convince the administration of the need for cloud seeding despite government agencies’ hesitancy because we are in the thick of planting canes now,” Lamata said.

He expressed gratitude to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr., and Sugar Regulatory Administrator Pablo Azcona for heeding their appeal.

Lamata also mentioned that his two planes were contracted to conduct cloud-seeding operations in Bacolod and parts of Negros Occidental. He reported that the operation was a success.

Another plane is conducting similar operations in Panay.

Lamata said that farmers, especially small planters without irrigation systems, will greatly benefit from this initiative.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here