Local man says cloud seeding could be causing lack of snow

By: Brian Shlonsky Email
By: Brian Shlonsky Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- The lack of winter weather is already keeping skiers and snowboarders off the slopes this year.

Monday, Powderhorn announced opening day is being pushed back, which has many people wondering, where is the snow?

John Stevens, a local economist, says Utah and California are stealing it.

"We're hoping to open on Saturday to appease everyone, but we definitely need the snow gods to appease us first," Gabrielle Michna, the sales and marketing manager at Powderhorn, said.

The resort has already pushed it's opening day from this Thursday to Saturday because of the lack of snow. "Unfortunately we don't want to push back opening day because we are just as excited as everyone else, but due to the safety conditions we just can't allow everyone to get up on the hill and possibly get injured," said Michna.

But why aren't the clouds dropping enough snow?

"This thing is stealing moisture that we normally would be having,” said Stevens, a former Wyoming county commissioner. Stevens said California and Utah are to blame.

"Because of the 4,000 ground based cloud seeding generators they have in Utah and California, and California is due west of us here, and I did proof a long time ago that the clouds couldn't regenerate themselves for 2,000 miles," Stevens said.

Cloud seeding is intentional weather modification, where different substances are sent into the air to force precipitation from clouds or cut down on fog.

Stevens said the ground-based generators in California and Utah are having a big effect on Colorado, hurting our rivers, water levels and drying out the clouds.

"When you look outside today, there's clouds out there, but there's no moisture in them," Stevens said.

Powderhorn officials said they're optimistic the snow will fall this week.

"We're expecting to get a little more snow this week. It is snowing up there right now, and it has been steadily snowing all day long,” Michna said.

But Stevens said either way, cloud seeding is a problem, one we need to try and stop.

"I'd like to see everyone get a hold of the governor of Colorado and go after those two states to stop that," he said.

KKCO 11 News spoke with meteorologists at the National Weather Service today to see if they could verify Stevens’ idea, but they said they didn't want to comment on the subject because they didn't have scientific evidence to prove or disprove his theory.

Stevens said he tried fighting cloud seeding as a county commissioner in Wyoming but was unsuccessful.

As for Powderhorn, officials say for it to open on Saturday, they need at least 8-12 more inches of snowfall.


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