Farmers decry weather manipulation

The provincial farmers union FERAL have announced that they are filing a complaint with the environmental police about the use of light aircraft to “seed” clouds with minerals to alter weather patterns.

José Antonio Pérez from FERAL explained that his union is working with cooperative Asaja to prepare a joint complaint to back up an earlier denuncia filed by Murcian farmers earlier this summer.

Snr Pérez said that the “number of complaints from our farmers can no longer be ignored and the Authorities must act”.

Francisco Vargas from Asaja said: “We don’t know if anti-storm flights are really used in Almeria, but I personally have witnessed how storm clouds have rolled down the Sierra de Maria mountains, only to hear the noise of aircraft before seeing those storm clouds disperse”.

Snr Vargas explained the motives behind the alleged flights. “Although we cannot go into too much detail ahead of an official complaint, we suspect agricultural insurance companies to be behind them. They want it to rain away from farmers crops so they don’t have to pay out, a sentiment shared by the larger farming groups. If true, this would be to the detriment of smaller farmers.”

A government spokesperson said that the Authorities were unaware of any such flights, and that no request to carry out such a mission had ever been registered. He also admitted that farmers had been complaining about such flights “for over 30 years”. A similar statement was issued earlier this year by a representative from the Murcia regional government. Neither region has an official policy on weather manipulation.

Rumors of such flights are common along the Mediterranean coast. At a farmers conference in Valencia at the beginning of the year, unions from several provinces united to ask the EU Parliament to setup a commission to investigate the claims.

If true, the manipulation of the ecosystem could have grave effects on local weather pattern, and it has been suggested that the drought is being aggravated by this weather manipulation.

Cloud seeding is not popular across Europe, but is official government policy in China and several large ski resorts across the USA have permission to carry out weather manipulation programmes.

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