VARSHADHAARE – 2019-20

CLOUD SEEDING PROGRAMME FOR ENHANCEMENT OF RAIN IN THE STATE OF KARNATAKA

The state of Karnataka is the 2nd arid state in India. Out of past 18 years. Karnataka have experienced draught situation in 14 years. As per the scientific paper published by IITM scientists Dr JR Kulkarni, Dr Savita Morwal and Dr NR Deshpande, reported that Cloud Seeding programme for rainfall executed in the state during 2017-18 resulted 27.9% increase in rainfall and/or received 2.1 TMC of water.

Out of the total 176 talukas in the state, 162 talukas have already been declared drought-prone for the year 2018-19. One can recall that even though there was good rainfall in coastal and malnad areas, most of the taluk areas had less rain than usual. This resulted in not only dearth of drinking water for people and livestock but also affected agricultural activities in most part of Karnataka. Based on the above, the Cabinet approval has been obtained to initiate and Tender Process to conduct cloud Seeding Programme. The Department of Rural Development and Panchayath Raj department is entrusted to implement and manage the Cloud Seeding Programme.

For successful cloud seeding operations, 3-radars are being installed in Surapur, Gadag and Bangalore. The cloud sowing operation is carried out by 2-special aircraft using Hubli Airport base, HAL Airport, Bangalore and Mysore Airport base. The contract to conduct Cloud Seeding Program has been awarded to Kyathi Climate Modification Consultants, Bangalore through the Global tendering process for Rs.45.00 crores.

Project planning of this Cloud Seeding Programme is prepared and managed by Technical Expert Committee consisting of scientists and technical experts from IMD, ISRO and IITM headed by Prof. G.S. Bhat, IIs and monitored jointly by the Additional Chief Secretary and Development Commissioner, Government of Karnataka. The Karnataka Natural Disaster Management Unit has installed around 6000 raingauges which accurately provides rain fall data. Our cloud seeding programme is utilising this facility to record, compare and evaluate precipitation enhancement. The Government of Karnataka have formed “Field Observation Team, Radar Calibration Team, Monitory & Advisory Team and Evaluation Team” consisting of scientist and experts in the field to execute the programme scientifically and successfully.

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