Should we make our own rain?
MILWAUKEE - It finally rained in portions of southeast Wisconsin on Friday. The precipitation won't remove southern Wisconsin from Severe Drought status but at least our plants, crops, and grass enjoyed a much needed drink.
Wouldn't it be nice if we could make it rain whenever we wanted? We can.
The practice, called cloud-seeding, involves sending silver iodide into clouds in order to boost snowfall or rainfall. Some states in the Southwest do this for irrigation and water production purposes.
Can it be done in Wisconsin?
Cloud-seeding could be successful here, according to weather-modification experts.
"It may be beneficial," said Arlen Huggens of the Desert Research Institute. "You may have a storm system develop during the spring growing season where you could seed those clouds and get some benefit."
But cloud-seeding wouldn't end a drought, Huggens said.
Don't expect to see cloud-seeding anytime soon however. Despite the dry conditions, Wisconsin farm experts tell me it would be too cost-prohibitive.