It sounds like the premise of a James Bond film. A Swiss company has come forward announcing to the world boldly that it now holds in its arsenal a machine that can control the weather. The technology used in the machine has many looking nervously toward the HAARP program. Could this technology be privately developed to create massive thunderstorms and -according to some theorists- earthquakes?
If a machine were developed that could make the skies open up with rain on command it would be a tremendously powerful tool for any nation to have. Though they may not have the tremendous force of a nuclear explosion, a typical rainstorm is an extremely important force to the ecological balance of the world. Without rain crops would fail, but with sufficient quantities there could be a bounteous harvest. And with the right weather manipulation perhaps even hurricanes could be prevented. Or unleashed.
There is another side to a potential weather machine. For years stories have been circulated of the HAARP system and its ability to control everything from the weather to the human mind. But if any weather modification system were able to create gale force winds or torrential downpours it could be an incredibly powerful and secret weapon as well as a great ecological equalizer. Not only could the wielders of the system make crops flourish, they could also make them fail. If the weather modification moguls became a corporate interest they could decide to prioritize where water fell based on the highest bidders. No doubt there would be systems in place to ensure people were not unduly affected, but in the great cogs of bureaucracy, millions of dollars in potential harvests could be lost in the mean time.
So would the system in this case be a great boon to society or a curse? And what about the ecological side of it? If weather modification were known to be safe, then it’s reasonable to think it could be deployed responsibly. But if it were instead disrupting the balance of the world’s weather systems then the human race would have to make a dreadful decision. Should we all try to ensure nations suffering from drought got rain? And what if the cost were more widespread droughts elsewhere? Weather systems are a complicated group, and one surplus might not necessarily demand another when it comes to rain.
But before the situation seems too difficult to handle, the company still has yet to provide the world with the hard data that makes their weather systems possible. And of course this raw data is to remain under lock and key. Already the secrecy of this new system is proving just as secret as another system around which many conspiracy theories have sprung. Is this new system going to be the next HAARP? Or is it going to turn out to be nothing more than a massive scientific blunder?