TAMIL NADU

Not a good idea

Sir, — The contention of President Abdul Kalam that desalination of sea water (Dec. 18) is the best solution to the water crisis is fraught with great danger to the economy as seen from the experience of Israel. Pakistan has found it economical to solve its water scarcity through cloud seeding operations. The Shanxi Province in North China has also taken up cloud seeding to produce additional rainfall. The scientists at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune, succeeded in producing 24 per cent annual additional rainfall during their experiment on warm cloud seeding between 1973 and 1986 at the rate of less than a paise per cubic metre of water. But desalination of sea-water costs about Rs.50 per cubic metre. It is suited only to the rich countries of Arabia. Indian States are blessed with abundant cloud cover that must be tapped.

T. Shivaji Rao,

Visakhapatnam, A.P.

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