Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Don't Fret or Worry

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Don't Fret or Worry

Article excerpt

We've had enough rain.

This statement could well be greeted with horror by some folk in inland and rural regions where drought conditions still prevail. But on the eastern seaboard, few people would disagree at the moment. If only we could turn off the tap.

Certainly, rain is an essential element of life, and without fresh water, plants and animals cannot survive. We know that. In Australia, extensive experiments in cloud-seeding have been conducted in an effort to find a way to artificially trigger rain in drought-ravaged areas of the country.

In 1839 in the United States, James Espy claimed that rain could easily be produced by heating the air. But his plan to saturate parched farmland by building huge log fires across vast stretches of the American West fortunately never materialised. Later in the 19th century, a new theory emerged: Loud noises would bring rain. This theory was put to the test in Texas, where Robert Dyrenforth accumulated enough ammunition for a small war. …

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