Punjab govt postpones artificial rain plan

lahore smog

LAHORE: The Punjab government’s much-anticipated plan to induce artificial rain in Lahore, aimed at curbing smog, has been postponed by four to six weeks, according to official sources.

The decision to delay the initiative is attributed to a combination of factors, including technical challenges and dissatisfaction with the performance of experts involved in the project.

One notable reason for the setback is the prolonged non-availability of the Punjab government’s aircraft, which has reportedly been grounded for several months due to maintenance issues.

Sources suggest that this unanticipated aircraft malfunction has contributed significantly to the delay in implementing the artificial rain plan.

Lockdown fails to reduce smog: Lahore struggles with alarming pollution levels

Government insiders reveal that the authorities are actively exploring alternatives and are in talks with a Dubai-based company specialising in cloud ionization and cloud seeding. A potential contract with this company could pave the way for the initiation of artificial rain operations in Lahore.

Officials state that, under the proposed agreement, the Dubai-based company would initially conduct cloud ionization and cloud seeding at five designated locations in Lahore. The process involves making clouds heavier using chemicals through a technique known as cloud seeding. Experts explain that, at an altitude of three to four thousand feet, sodium chloride can be sprayed from an aircraft to induce rain clouds.

In loosely explained terms, the addition of clouds make the smog closer to fog with a higher water content and less level of pollution. Furthermore, the rain itself can help in washing away the pollutants that become causes of the smog.

The Punjab government had originally announced the artificial rain initiative as a proactive measure against the prevalent smog in the region. However, the unexpected challenges and technical hitches have prompted authorities to reassess and reschedule the implementation of the plan, now slated for a later date.

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