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DHS Rebuffed by NOAA on Hurricane Modification

By Ed O'Keefe

Satellite image of Hurricane Katrina as it approaches the Gulf Coast on Aug. 28, 2005. Courtesy NOAA.

By Steve Tracton of The Post's Capital Weather Gang blog:

The field of hurricane modification research has been largely silent since 1983, which marked the end of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Project Stormfury. The 21-year NOAA project sought to weaken hurricanes by seeding clouds with silver iodide, but failed to prove that changes in storm behavior were due to seeding rather than natural causes.

More than 25 years later, despite the dubious results of past research and other concerns raised by critics, the Department of Homeland Security is attempting to establish a hurricane modification program of its own, but NOAA appears unwilling to provide the critical support the DHS program requires.

In an earlier post I reviewed past attempts and recent proposals to modify hurricanes in order to lessen the severity of their impacts on life and property. Some ideas, such as blowing storms up with hydrogen bombs or using giant fans to blow storms away from land, are as absurd as the scheme I concocted for saving Miami from the fictional Hurricane Calamity (dispensing Prozac into the storm), while others appear scientifically reasonable and potentially feasible.

Continue reading this post at The Capital Weather Gang >>>

By Ed O'Keefe  | May 19, 2009; 12:30 PM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments, Turf War  
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