The awaited 45-hour cloud seeding operations (CSOs) sponsored by various government agencies will commence on Thursday.
In her letter dated October 26, 2018, Angel C. Enriquez, officer-in-charge, director- BSWM informed Governor Edgar M. Chatto that the operations will be conducted in two rounds. First round will be on Thursday up to November 18, 2018 using the 30 microns powder salt, and the second on November 18-27, 2018 using the vacuum dried salt (15-200 microns).
Enriquez said that during the joint area assessment conducted September 10-13, 2018 it was recommended that the cloud seeding be conducted in the province of Bohol.
The upcoming operations were set in motion by the Provincial Government of Bohol (PGBh), Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Soil and Water Management (BSWM), DA-Regional Field Office (DA-RFO7), Philippine Air Force (PAF) and Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA).
The rainfall forecast of PAG-ASA in the province is below normal to way below normal for the period of November 2018 to February 2019 that would result up to 60% reduction of rainfall, hence, the operation with a 45-hour allocation will start on Nov. 8, 2018, Enriquez said.
She requested the office of the governor the provision of service vehicle for the staff of the PAF, PAG-ASA, and BSWM from Bohol Agricultural Promotion Center (B-APC) to Tagbilaran City Airport in the whole duration of the operations.
Likewise, Enriquez also requested to inform the nearby municipalities that will be benefited and or affected by the cloud seeding in the province.
Leon Parac Jr., CSO focal person said that on Wednesday a day prior the operations all rice technicians that serve as spotters will undergo the refresher training.
Parac said the CSOs supposed to be conducted last October 16, 2018 but due to the adamant request from the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) and the irrigators themselves to hold in abeyance the CSOs until the reproductive stage of standing crops would be harvested.
He said that CSOs should be conducted to four major dams in Bohol namely: Malinao Dam in Pilar, Bayongan Dam (San Miguel), Capayas Dam (Ubay), and in Talibon Dam (Talibon) to save the rice vegetative stage and in land preparation for the next dry cropping season this month.
Parac explained that after the 45-hour CSOs sponsored by the PAG-ASA, BSWM-DA-RFO7 conducted, another 42 hours of CSOs sponsored by the Provincial Government of Bohol (PGBh) will be conducted.
Earlier, Gov. Chatto wrote the PAG-ASA, DA-BSWM to set aside an allocation to be used in conducting the cloud seeding to produce artificial rain.
Bohol has 56,913 hectares (has.) of which the 23,993.68 has. are irrigated and the 32,919.53 are rainfed. (AtoyCosap)