Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Technology Assessment and Application Agency (BPPT) has readied 50 tons of salt to produce artificial rain to tackle land and forest fires in West Kalimantan.

"We have prepared 50 tons of salt for cloud seeding, with 10 tons of salt for each delivery, in accordance with the condition in West Kalimantan," Head of the agency's Weather Modification Technology (TMC) Tri Handoko Seto stated here on Friday.

An Air Force CN-295 aircraft will be deployed to conduct cloud seeding to create artificial rain, the process for which will begin on Sunday (Sept 15) or Monday (Sept 16).

Related news: Drought affecting 20 districts, towns in West Java

"The TMC team in Supadio, Pontianak, will cover West Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan," he remarked.

Seto noted that cloud seeding will be conducted on a continual basis to induce rain and douse forest fires in the region.

The potential of sporadic cloud seeding in the region, despite the volume being small, can be used to produce rain.

"Cloud seeds change every day. Sometimes they are there, while sometimes they are not," he pointed out.

Haze arising from land and forest fires in West and Central Kalimantan caused a degradation in air quality in the regions and compelled local governments to shut down schools and distribute face masks to residents.

Related news: Nearly 50 million Indonesians threatened by extreme drought

Translator: Martha Herlinawati S, Sri Hary
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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