The Mexican Air Force announced that from the first days of July the clouds that form in Sonora will be bombarded with silver iodide. This will serve to increase the chances of rain and thus, face the extreme drought that is being experienced in the entity.
According to the newspaper The Herald, Captain Zacarías Estrada Vega, spokesman for Air Base number 18, explained that in the state of Baja California these measures had to be used, which worked successfully. On the other hand, this measure also began to be used in Nuevo León and Sinaloa.
For this, King Air 350i aircraft will be used, which will be equipped with silver iodide tanks. Each ship will be manned by two army pilots and a technician to handle the chemical, and it is expected to start already during the first half of July.
The captain stated that By spreading silver iodide in clouds with potential for rain, the forecast is increased by 30 to 40 percent. However, everything depends on the weather forecast, because before being sprayed with the substances, the clouds must meet certain conditions.
He added that the clouds should be attacked when they are in the mountains, so that when the chemical takes effect, the rain is located within the state. For this reason, the entity’s climatic activity must be monitored.
If this plan works, a total of two million hectares of Sonora could be impacted by the rains, in addition to recharging the five basins and seven dams in the state.
According to the National Water Commission (Conagua), the drought in Sonora has impacted its 72 municipalities, of which 42 suffer extreme drought and 23 exceptional drought.
That is why it is urgent to take this type of measures, as they will help to moisten the earth, recharge wells, grow grasslands for livestock feed and also obtain more water presence in dams, streams and streams, which are sources of supply for the main cities of the state.
A worrying and complicated situation, was as described last February by Jorge Zavala Hidalgo, general coordinator of the National Meteorological Service (SMN), the state of the main dams in Mexico due to the lack of rain. These registered a deficit of 19.8 percent in the previous months.
During a meeting of the National Committee for Large Dams, Zavala Hidalgo stated that the degree of drought in the national territory increased from 79.12 to 80.43%, between January 31 and February 15.
Such is the impact that, Luis Antonio Aguilar Meza, Deputy Manager of Surface Water and Engineering of Ríos de la Conagua announced that 83 of the 210 most important dams in the country are less than 50% full and lower than the historical normal, while only three dams are above 100% storage.
He added that 56 are between 75 and 100%, as well as 57 dams between 50 and 75% fill and 11 dams are less than 50%, which adds up to a total deficit of 7,885 million cubic meters of water.
For his part, Víctor Bourguett Ortiz, general director of the Waters of the Valley of Mexico Basin Agency (OCAVM) of Conagua, explained that the dams El Bosque, Villa Victoria and Valle de Bravo, of the Cutzamala System, continue with decreasing levels, since its average storage is 54.2 percent.