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Ensuring Good Weather for Games
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Beijing plans to experiment with rain prevention measures next month to ensure good weather prevails during the Olympic Games next year.

"We are still in the experimental stage," Zhang Qiang, who is in charge of Beijing's artificial rain-making and prevention, said.

"The lack of rain so far this summer is making it difficult to conduct more experiments and collect enough data. We need more rain," she said.

Wang Yubin, deputy chief engineer with the Beijing Meteorological Bureau, said: "The bureau will use catalytic agents to force rain clouds to burst, should there be any, hours before the ceremony, ensuring good weather.

"We are very experienced in cloud seeding."

But he admitted weather forecasts sometimes are very inaccurate.

"The forecast will have to be fairly accurate or we will not be able to fulfill our mission. There are some risks as no weather forecast is 100 percent accurate," Wang said.

"Cloud dispersal is more difficult than seeding, and we are working on it."

Weather patterns for the past 30 years indicate there is a possibility of rain on August 8, next year - the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games, and two weeks later, the closing ceremony.

Olympic weather forecasts must be worked out three days in advance and updated every three hours during the Games.

(China Daily July 6, 2007)

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