Scientists in the United Arab Emirates are working towards new methods of weather manipulation in an attempt to bring increased rainfall to the desert country—and so far, it appears the efforts have been successful. The cloud seeding operation, which uses electrical charges to prompt rainfall, speaks to the growing interest globally in rainmaking technologies as an avenue for potentially mitigating drought.
According to The Independent, the cloud seeding method employed in Dubai relies on drone technology. The drones release an electrical charge into clouds, prompting them to coalesce and create rain. The technology is reportedly favored compared to other forms of cloud seeding because it uses electricity to generate rain rather than chemicals.
The Middle Eastern country receives an average of four inches of rain per year and summer temperatures that routinely surpass 120 degrees, reported the news outlet. Additionally, its sinking water table—an essential source of fresh water—poses a serious threat. As a result, in 2017, the UAE invested a total of $15 million across nine projects hoping to increase rainfall.