Cloud seeding over Bulacan dams begin to create artificial rain

25 sacks of fine salt were loaded on the BN-2 Islander plane that flies toward the dams over La Mesa, Ipo, and Angat from Plaridel Airport. Each sack contains 25 kilos, which is scattered in clouds of cumulonimbus to create artificial rain and pour into the dam, which now continues to decrease the level of water due to drought. (Contributed photo)

CITY OF MALOLOS, Bulacan — The Department of Agriculture (DA)’s Bureau of Soil and Water Management has started its cloud seeding operation in the dams in Bulacan particularly at Angat Dam on Monday afternoon (May 6) to create artificial rain to increase the water level of the dams.

The DA personnel loaded 25 sacks of fine salt or iodized salt to the BN-2 Islander airplane flying from Plaridel Airport of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and scattered it at the top clouds over the Angat Dam, Ipo Dam and La Mesa Dam in Bulacan

According to project development officer Mary Joy David, each sack contains 25 kilos of salt where they have to find first a kind of mixed white and dark clouds or what they called cumulonimbus clouds where it should be dispersed and will create thunder and lightning to pour rain.

“The cloud seeding is carried out during the period of drought in most parts of the country,” David added.

According to Ted Elipio, division manager operation of the Angat-Umiray Trans-basin of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), the water level in Angat Dam located in Norzagaray town is now at 176 meters.

It was found to be far from 214 spilling levels during the rainy season and the arrival of typhoons.

Despite being heavily deployed, the Angat Dam was recorded lower in early 2010, with a more severe drought, reaching 157 meters.

In line with this, while trying to increase water levels in the dam, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) will temporarily cut down the irrigation supply to the Palay farmlands in Bulacan and Pampanga beginning May 16.

It was learned that there are still 10 cubic meters per second (cms) or equivalent to 864 liters per day for irrigated farmland.

David assured that the cloud seeding would continue, if necessary, to increase the water level in the dam.

96% of the water supply of Metro Manila which is shared by two private concessions such as Maynilad and Manila Water came from the Angat Dam.

In the first quarter of 2019, the Bulakenyo started using the water from Angat Dam since it started the initial operation of the Bulacan Bulk Water Supply Project stage 1 particularly in the areas of the city of San Jose Del Monte, towns of Santa Maria, Marilao, Meycauayan, Obando, Balagtas, and Bocaue. (RONDA Balita Online News)

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Emmanuel "Manny" Dineros Balbin, an editor-in-chief of RONDA Balita, Lingguhang Pahayagan ng Masang Intelihente, and RONDA Balita Online News was a former seminarian of Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) in Notre Dame University Seminary in Cotabato City. Graduated Philosophy as major course, Political Science as minor, at the University of Santo Tomas, Legaspi City but landed and became a journalist. A former Journal Group of Publication (People's Journal, Peoples Tonight, Taliba & Women's Journal) staffer for 17 years. Before he was simultaneously contributed news articles to 3 local newspaper in Bulacan (NewsCore, MetroNews & NewsWatcher). A former Journal Group Bulacan correspondent, Kabayan provincial reporter, 2010 Bulacan election correspondent by Rappler and presently, a stringer of Philippine News Agency (PNA) Bulacan.


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