Moscow: No snow this winter. Vegas: Bring it on!

This one is going to be really fun to watch.

The Mayor of Moscow in Russia thinks he can control the weather. Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov is planning to devote as much as $6 million to a weather modification program designed to make snowfall occur in areas outside the city limits.

According to Time Magazine and other sources, The Russian Air Force will seed clouds this winter with silver iodide and dry ice crystals, and even powdered cement in an attempt to wring our moisture before it reaches the city limits. The goal is to prevent big snowstorms. Apparently the $6 million Moscow is spending is about half of the city’s annual snow removal budget.

It will be interesting to see if any local weather modification can affect the large scale snow generating ascent associated with synoptic scale winter storms. I do not see any credible methods to measure potential effects.

Cloud seeding and other weather modification has produced mixed results. The theory is that by adding or increasing condensation nuclei to clouds and weather systems that you can increase precipitation amounts. There are also programs designed to suppress hail and fog. There are a variety of substances added to accomplish various outcomes such as silver iodide crystals to enhance snowfall and dry ice to suppress fog.

There are claims of increased snowfall of about 10% in the Rocky Mountain States.

This is why the Nevada has approved $900,000 to continue a cloud seeding program this winter to aid in snowfall enhancement for Nevada and water-strapped Las Vegas.

This will be fun to watch this winter. As we say in the broadcast business, stay tuned!

PH