Call for support of Weather Modification Project

Jerome Behm


This is an open letter to the citizens of Ward County to alert all of you to the fact that the Weather Modification Project is in jeopardy. As a life long farmer-rancher and Ward County resident all of this is of grave concern to me. As long as my livelihood depends on my ability to produce a quality raw agricultural product, it is obvious that I will do all in my power to successfully achieve that goal.

There is a group of people using social media in an attempt to kill this program. This group dismisses all of the science and studies of cloud seeding which have proven to be successful and fruitful in the past. When their ideas prove to be wrong, they have now turned to physical and verbal abuse and the Weather Modification Project is now being severely rebuked.

It is common for the majority of the populace to view this as a program designed to be of benefit solely for the purposes of agricultural production. This, however, is not true and the intent of this program needs to be looked at and scrutinized much more closely than one might ordinarily do. Inasmuch as rain enhancement and hail suppression are the primary goals of this program, the scope of its purpose is much more broad and affects nearly all of the citizens of the area. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits to be derived for the average citizen. If you own real property or a home in this area you then are a beneficiary of this program. How many of us if it were possible to do so would try to reduce the incidence of hail damage and storm destruction to our property? Most of us know firsthand how expensive roof repairs are and how damaging hail is to the roofs of our homes and buildings. And what about the other damage that hail often causes to windows, siding, vehicles, and our other personal property which we all have? We are all vulnerable to hail and storm damage and none of us can escape that risk. This is not to say that all of the threat of hail and adverse weather can be be avoided by the use of this program but it is proven that the risks have been lessened and minimized from levels that would otherwise be the norm. When the incidence of hail is reduced due to a program of this sort, the rates which we pay for hail insurance are also reduced and that equates to cost savings for all of us who do choose to carry insurance of this type. With all of this in mind, stop then and consider that you too are receiving the benefits of the Weather Modification Project and that it does directly affect you too!

A budget hearing is scheduled for August 6th by the Ward County Board of Commissioners to determine whether this and other budgets will be funded and by what amounts. Our commissioners need to know that there is strong support county wide for this program. All of this depends on you, the citizens of Ward County, and it is of paramount importance that you personally contact the commissioners and that your voices be heard for the support of this project and its continuation. If you do not make your voices heard it is likely that this program will disappear from Ward County. It is extremely imperative that you speak up now before it is too late.

The commissioners can all be contacted by phone and by e-mail. They are all listed in the area phone directories and their contact information can also be accessed by going to “Ward County, North Dakota” on the internet. It is of paramount importance that you make your thoughts and voices heard while sufficient time exists to do so before the August 6th budget meeting.