China is massively expanding its weather-modification program, saying it will be able to cover half the country in artificial rain and snow by 2025

a group of people walking in a city: People on the Bund in Shanghai, China. Yang Jianzheng/VCG via Getty Images

© Yang Jianzheng/VCG via Getty Images
People on the Bund in Shanghai, China. Yang Jianzheng/VCG via Getty Images

  • China’s government has announced that it is expanding its weather-control project, which creates artificial rain and snow, by fivefold.
  • The State Council said Tuesday the project will soon cover 2.1 million square miles and be ready by 2025. That is about 56% of China’s entire surface area.
  • China is one of dozens of countries using “cloud seeding” to try and manufacture good weather conditions for crops or to prevent natural disasters.
  • “Cloud seeding” involves spraying chemicals like silver iodide or liquid nitrogen into clouds, where water droplets condense and fall.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

China is massively expanding its weather-control project, and is aiming to be able to cover half the country in artificial rain and snow by 2025, the government said Tuesday.

The practice of “cloud seeding” was discovered in the US in 1946 by a chemist working for General Electric. China launched its own similar program in the 1960s.

Dozens of other countries – including the US – also have such programs, but Beijing has the world’s largest, employing around 35,000 people, The Guardian reported.

In a statement, China’s State Council said that the country’s cloud seeing project will expand fivefold to cover an area of 2.1 million square miles and be completed by 2025. (China encompasses 3.7 million square miles, meaning the project could cover 56% of the country’s surface area.)

The project will be at a “worldwide advanced level” by 2035, the State Council said, and will help alleviate “disasters such as drought and hail” and facilitate emergency responses “to forest or grassland fires.”

a group of people standing in front of a building: People visit the Forbidden City during a blue sky summer day on August 29, 2019 in Beijing, China. Getty

© Getty
People visit the Forbidden City during a blue sky summer day on August 29, 2019 in Beijing, China. Getty

Generating artificial rain and snow is fairly simple in principle. Spraying chemicals like silver iodide or liquid nitrogen into clouds can make water droplets condense, and fall as rain or snow.

China launched a localized cloud seeding project in Beijing shortly before the 2008 Olympics, which it said successfully forced anticipated rains to fall before the event started.

In June 2016, China allocated $30 million to its cloud seeding project, and started firing bullets filled with salt and minerals into the sky.

A year later, China spent $168 million on a huge supply of equipment to facilitate the project, including four aircraft and “897 rocket launchers,” The Guardian said.

As Business Insider previously reported, China’s Ministry of Finance wanted to use cloud seeding to create at least 60 billion cubic meters of additional rain every year by 2020.

In January 2019, state media reported that cloud seeding tactics in the western region of Xinjiang had prevented crops from 70% of hail damage.

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China to expand weather modification program to cover 5.5 million square kilometers

China this week revealed plans to drastically expand an experimental weather modification program to cover an area of over 5.5 million square kilometers (2.1 million square miles) — more than 1.5 times the total size of India.

a couple of people that are standing in the snow: A worker fires rockets for cloud seeding in an attempt to make rain in Huangpi, China on May 10, 2011.

© AFP/AFP/AFP via Getty Images
A worker fires rockets for cloud seeding in an attempt to make rain in Huangpi, China on May 10, 2011.

According to a statement from the State Council, China will have a “developed weather modification system” by 2025, thanks to breakthroughs in fundamental research and key technologies, as well as improvements in “comprehensive prevention against safety risks.”

In the next five years, the total area covered by artificial rain or snowfall will reach 5.5 million sq km, while over 580,000 sq km (224,000 sq miles) will be covered by hail suppression technologies. The statement added that the program will help with disaster relief, agricultural production, emergency responses to forest and grassland fires, and dealing with unusually high temperatures or droughts.

China has long sought to control the weather to protect farming areas and to ensure clear skies for key events — it seeded clouds ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympics to reduce smog and avoid rain ahead of the competition. Key political meetings held in the Chinese capital are notorious for enjoying beautiful clear skies, thanks both to weather modification and the shutting down of nearby factories.

As a concept, cloud seeding has been around for decades. It works by injecting small amounts of silver iodide into clouds with a lot of moisture, which then condenses around the new particles, becoming heavier and eventually falling as precipitation.

A study funded by the US National Science Foundation, published earlier this year, found that “cloud seeding can boost snowfall across a wide area if the atmospheric conditions are favorable.” The study was one of the first to ascertain definitively that cloud seeding worked, as previously it had been difficult to distinguish precipitation created as a result of the practice from normal snowfall.

That uncertainty had not stopped China investing heavily in the technology: between 2012 and 2017, the country spent over $1.34 billion on various weather modification programs. Last year, according to state news agency Xinhua, weather modification helped reduce 70% of hail damage in China’s western region of Xinjiang, a key agricultural area.

And while other countries have also invested in cloud seeding, including the US, China’s enthusiasm for the technology has created some alarm, particularly in neighboring India, where agriculture is heavily dependent on the monsoon, which has already been disrupted and become less predictable as a result of climate change.

India and China recently faced off along their shared — and hotly disputed — border in the Himalayas, with the two sides engaging in their bloodiest clash in decades earlier this year. For years, some in India have speculated that weather modification could potentially give China the edge in a future conflict, given the importance of conditions to any troop movements in the inhospitable mountain region.

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Seattle’s tuition-free community college program comes to the rescue during the pandemic | Momaha

Two years ago, Seattle voters overwhelmingly approved an education levy giving the city’s public high-school graduates two years of free community college.

But just as the program was gearing up to start its first year at full capacity, the pandemic hit.

Schools shut down. And the recruitment and enrollment specialists stationed at each Seattle high school to raise awareness and help students apply could only work from home.

A summer session meant to help prepare students for college life? That had to be entirely redesigned.

And the students already enrolled in the program? They suddenly needed Wi-Fi, devices and a space to learn on their own.

And yet, in some ways, Seattle Promise couldn’t have come at a better time. Despite the hurdles, the program has exceeded its pandemic-era enrollment projections. That’s even as nationally, community colleges saw a 22% dip; statewide, community college enrollment is down 13.5% this year.

This fall, Seattle Promise counted 846 students, including 699 in their first year, and 147 in their second. That represents about one-third of Seattle Public Schools’ class of 2020. And 62% are students of color.

“There’s a pervasive narrative out there that some students don’t want to go to college. Our students and data suggest that students overwhelmingly want to go to college,” said Nicole Yohalem, opportunity youth initiatives director at The Community Center for Education Results, a nonprofit that provides data, research and other supports for schools in South King County. “They understand how critical some education post-high school is.”

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Saint Leo University Announces New Nursing Program

Press release from Saint Leo University:

Dec. 1, 2020

Saint Leo University is launching a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program beginning Fall Semester 2021 at its University Campus, north of Tampa. This program is designed to prepare students for generalist nursing practice within complex health care systems.

“We are thrilled to be adding the Bachelor of Science in Nursing to our College of Health Professions. This is a contemporary and competitive program that will incorporate best practices and current innovation to prepare our graduates for future career opportunities throughout Florida and throughout the United States,” said Saint Leo University President Jeffrey D. Senese. “There is a growing demand for nurses across the country, and Saint Leo is well-positioned to help meet this need.”

The limited-access program will be accepting new students into pre-nursing coursework in arts and sciences during the first two years, including courses in anatomy, microbiology, math, writing, ethics, and psychology. Students will then apply to the nursing program during their sophomore year to begin the nursing-major courses in year three. The application process is competitive and limited spaces are available for the BSN program. This program format will allow for potential transfer students and second-degree students who may want to pursue their BSN degree in a shorter time-frame to consider Saint Leo.

There is a growing need for nurses in the coming years as a result of the rapidly aging U.S. population and a simultaneous number of nurses retiring. The global pandemic continues to support this urgent need for licensed nurses in the field as the health care system undergoes a major transformation in structure and groundbreaking technology advances.

“We are excited to offer future professionals a strong curriculum that is also unusual in having a contemporary focus on holistic wellness for all people—meaning individual patients, families, and communities—and an emphasis on the well-being of the nurse,” said Dr. Mary Spoto, vice president for Academic Affairs. “Teaching future nurses to cultivate their own well-being is a good way to reduce turnover in the profession, and that serves everyone in society,” Spoto explained.

Upper-level nursing courses will commence in Fall Semester 2023 and the university anticipates having 48 spots for students in the first group admitted. Students will participate in theory, simulation, lab, and clinical experiences at a variety of health care and community agencies including West Florida Advent Health and others. The program will prepare graduates who can provide safe, quality care with an emphasis on wellness. The first group will complete their studies in Spring Semester 2025.


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Upon successful completion of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), graduates are able to work as registered nurses. “Nurses who have a BSN are favored regionally and nationally by health care employers and are well-positioned for career

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First-of-Its-Kind Dual Enrollment Program Enables Xceed Anywhere Students to Earn University of Pittsburgh Credits

WESTON, Fla., Dec. 3, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — When Faith, a Florida high school student, learned she could earn college credits from the University of Pittsburgh from the comfort of her own home and at no cost to her, she couldn’t wait to sign up.

“I was excited to hear that I will be able to take a college-level course in a subject I like and earn credits toward my first year in college,” Faith said. “I’m looking forward to taking Psychology and I’m happy Xceed Anywhere is giving me this opportunity.”

Faith is a student at Xceed Anywhere (XA), a private virtual school for students in grades 6-12 known for its innovative, personalized and flexible educational model. Through a new dual enrollment partnership with the University of Pittsburgh and—the first of its kind in the country—11th and 12th grade students at Xceed Anywhere can earn college credits, online, in a timeframe that aligns with their schedules. The cost is included in their tuition.

“This unique opportunity with the University of Pittsburgh and further extends our mission of building learning plans around our students’ needs, passions and goals,” said Dr. Brent Goldman, founder and CEO of Xceed Anywhere and Xceed Preparatory Academy. “Our students will graduate with credits from one of the top research universities in the country. This is a value-added benefit we are giving our kids.”

“The University of Pittsburgh has a long history of providing opportunities for high school students to gain college credit as they work to complete their high school diplomas and advance their long-term goals. Pitt’s College in High School is one example of our existing efforts—and we are excited to further expand our outreach nationally through Xceed Anywhere,” said University of Pittsburgh Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Ann E. Cudd.

Xceed Anywhere students will take their courses through the University of Pittsburgh’s partnership with, which was just named one of TIME’s Best Inventions of 2020. Created by MasterClass co-founder Aaron Rasmussen, is an online education platform working to increase access to quality college education for all and reduce student debt. The virtual learning platform features immersive courses, cinema-quality video and interactive exercises that are just as effective as in-person classes. Courses are taught by engaging professors from leading universities such as Columbia, Yale, Duke, NYU, MIT, Cornell and University College London and include Calculus I, Intro to Astronomy, Intro to Psychology and Intro to Statistics.

“As a former dual-enrollment student in high school, it was formative in building my confidence in my ability to do college-level work,” said Aaron Rasmussen, founder and CEO of “Part of our mission is to increase access to quality college-level courses for students worldwide, and I’m excited about giving this opportunity to students at Xceed.”

Betty Norton, Head of School for Xceed Anywhere, agreed, stating, “Our students are poised to have a competitive

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Oregon State University COVID-19 tracing program going national

The project started in April with the goal of finding out how prevalent the virus is in communities.

CORVALLIS, Ore. — A first-of-its-kind COVID-19 tracking program that started at Oregon State University (OSU) is going national.

Last April, OSU researchers began randomly testing communities for COVID-19. Their goal was to find out how prevalent the virus was. The researchers teamed up with health care workers and went to door to door at random offering up free COVID-19 tests. Their goal was to test even those carriers with no symptoms and to estimate how many people in the community were infected. The project was named TRACE COVID-19.

“The number of people infected is a key metric and it’s a key driver of the epidemic,” said project leader Ben Dalziel. “As an infectious disease, the number of people who are infected now plays a big role in determining how many people will become infected in the near future.”

It’s information that could play a critical role when it comes to deciding when a state should loosen restrictions or tighten them.

Over the months the program has evolved to include testing wastewater for COVID-19 as well. That’s because with every flush of the feces of an infected person, an inactive form of the virus enters the system.

“There’s a really good correlation between the presence of the virus in wastewater and the prevalence,” said Dalziel.

RELATED: Sewer sampling detects COVID-19 in every Corvallis neighborhood

Now, the OSU-based project is going national.

In November, researchers received a $2 million grant from the David and Lucile Packard foundation to create a national TRACE center, expanding OSU’s program to universities across the country.

“We see a crying need for that more real-time data elsewhere in the country as well,” said Chad English, science program officer for the Packard Foundation.

The researchers say the real-time data could also play a big role in tracking the success of the COVID-19 vaccines and lifting restrictions.

“How vaccine distribution may be impacting… in decreasing prevalence… all that requires information on what the virus is doing,” said Dalziel.

“This is the difference between knowing whether it’s safe to reopen our economies or whether it’s time for us to hunker down,” said English.

RELATED: OSU researchers explain development and distribution of vaccines

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Eastern Michigan University, Henry Ford College partner to extend Futures for Frontliners program

YPSILANTI, MI — Eastern Michigan University and Henry Ford College have partnered to extend Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Futures for Frontliners program to help more frontline workers obtain four-year degrees.

Once frontline workers graduate with an associate degree from HFC, they can apply to pursue a bachelor’s degree at EMU that would cover some or all of their remaining tuition balance, officials announced Wednesday.

The EMU Frontliner scholarship is available to new students who enroll at EMU.

Frontline workers are those who have jobs that have required them to work outside their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic. That includes those working in grocery stores and restaurants; those in waste management services, manufacturing, public transportation; or those providing police or fire services.

Henry Ford graduates who are frontline workers, enroll at EMU and are Pell Grant eligible will receive an EMU Frontliner Scholarship to cover their remaining tuition balance, EMU officials said. The scholarship will cover 12 credits of tuition for five consecutive semesters of enrollment at EMU.

Graduates of HFC who enroll at EMU and are not Pell Grant eligible will receive an EMU Frontliner scholarship of $5,000 that will be split into increments of $1,250 for each of four consecutive semesters of full-time enrollment at 12 or more credit hours per semester, officials said.

When Whitmer announced the Futures for Frontliners program, HFC President Russ Kavalhuna said he began talking with some of his partners at four-year universities. EMU answered the call, Kavalhuna said, and they wanted to extend the program for frontline workers.

“I have not seen any other two-year or four-year institution put its own resources behind helping these essential workers the way (EMU) has,” Kavalhuna said. “…This is an opportunity for us as a society to reinvest in people who have been serving us on the front lines.”

Part of the Futures for Frontliners goal is to help Michigan meet its Sixty by 30 goal to increase the number of working-age adults with a technical certificate or college degree from 45% to 60% by 2030, according to a university news release.

The partnership between EMU and HFC will provide an increased opportunity for frontline workers to earn a postsecondary credential, and EMU President James Smith feels this is a way to give back to essential workers.

“If you think about a frontline worker, they’re literally putting their life on the line so that you and I can go to the pharmacy or the grocery store,” Smith said. “Without them, we couldn’t do that, and this is our payback to them, our ‘thank you,’ if you will.”

While it could be good for enrollment for both EMU and HFC, Smith said it’s less about enrollment for their respective institutions and more about creating an affordable pathway for frontline workers to get a bachelor’s degree, especially if more colleges develop similar partnerships.

“We really do think that the more is the merrier, and we’re anxious to see where this will take us with our colleagues,” Smith said.

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Georgia State University Receives $2 Million Gift in Memory of Days Inns Founder to Establish Hospitality Immersion Program

The MarketWatch News Department was not involved in the creation of this content.

Atlanta, Dec 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE via COMTEX) —
Atlanta, Dec. 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Administration at Georgia State University’s J. Mack Robinson College of Business has received a $2 million endowment from Deen Day Sanders to establish an immersion program in memory of her late husband, Days Inns founder and school namesake, Cecil B. Day, Sr.

The endowment will be used to develop the Cecil B. Day Immersion Program to provide graduate and undergraduate hospitality students semester-long experiential learning opportunities tailored to their specific career aspirations. The majority of the gift will be used to provide scholarships and academic aid to make it possible for students of all backgrounds to participate.

Whether studying domestically or abroad, participants will take part in signature experiences that demonstrate internationally renowned examples of quality operations across all sectors of hospitality including lodging, food and beverage, event management and entertainment. Following a semester of hands-on projects, mentorship from hospitality leaders and networking, students will emerge with a greater understanding of corporate processes, analytical approaches, and strategies for innovation.

“It is with great honor and tremendous gratitude to the Day family that we accept this gift and embark on the creation of the Cecil B. Day Immersion Program,” said Debra Cannon, director of the Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Administration. “Cecil B. Day was a pioneering innovator and marketing genius, and we are thrilled to further his legacy through this new program. During a time when our industry needs innovation the most, this student-centric gift has the power to transform careers and change lives.”

The competitive application and selection process for the Cecil B. Day Immersion Program will open in fall 2021, after which admitted students will participate in professional development workshops to prepare for the experience.

Robinson’s School of Hospitality Administration was renamed the Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Administration in 1988. Cecil B. Day is remembered as an astute businessman who developed Days Inns to national prominence throughout the course of his career. His family’s legacy of excellence and philanthropy is the foundation upon which the program bases its vision for preparing future generations of hospitality executives.

The Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Administration is the oldest and largest hospitality administration school in Georgia. It offers certificate, bachelors, and master’s-level programs. CEOWORLD ranks it 22nd among the world’s top hospitality and hotel management schools, and Eduniversal ranks the school’s Regynald G. Washington Master of Global Hospitality Management 24th worldwide.

Learn more about the Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality Administration at

About Georgia State University’s J. Mack Robinson College of Business

Georgia State University’s J. Mack Robinson College of Business is 8th among accredited U.S. business colleges for graduate enrollment, according to the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB). More Georgia executives hold advanced degrees from Robinson and Georgia State than any other U.S. institution.

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University of Maine at Augusta dental assisting program available at UMA Lewiston Center

LEWISTON – The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) is pleased to announce that it will now offer a certificate and an associate degree program in dental assisting as well as the Expanded Functions Dental Assisting (EFDA) curriculum at its UMA Lewiston Center.

This opportunity to expand the dental programs to the UMA Lewiston Center was made possible through multiple funding sources, including a $100,000 grant through the University of Maine System’s Program Innovation Fund, a $50,000 grant from the Northeast Delta Dental Foundation, and a $25,000 grant received from the Libra Foundation.

Until this innovative program, UMA’s Dental Assisting Program and EFDA curriculum have been limited to offering laboratory and preclinical courses on the UMA-Bangor Campus where the UMA Dental Programs are currently located. Establishing a clinic at a UMA center provides an opportunity for place-bound students interested in pursuing a professional program to do so close to home.  Immediately upon graduation, these graduates are ready to enter the workforce in their communities. 

The portable nature of the clinic allows UMA, over a two-year period, to help meet the dental workforce and community needs of a specific area of Maine before relocating to another UMA Center to do the same. Enrollment for the first cohort of EFDA and Dental Assisting students is now open with classes beginning in January 2021!

“UMA is excited to bring its Dental Assisting Programs to the Lewiston Auburn area,” stated UMA President Rebecca Wyke. “This new rotating dental clinic concept allows us to expand into areas where students can pursue dental careers close to home. This also provides educational opportunities that are beneficial in growing Maine’s workforce.” 

“UMA offers the only EFDA program and accredited dental assisting program in the State of Maine. Upon graduating from an accredited dental assisting program, students are immediately eligible to apply to the Maine Board of Dental Practice for a State of Maine Dental Radiographer license and may also take the Dental Assisting National Board exam to become a certified dental assistant,” acknowledged Amanda Willette, UMA assistant professor of dental health. “There is a significant need for credentialed dental assistants throughout Maine, particularly in the Southern and Mid-coast regions. A critical element of improving access to quality dental care is having an adequate workforce to meet the needs of a community,” Willette stated.

There are no fees to apply to UMA for admission and no application fee to complete the Federal Student Financial Aid (FAFSA) form. UMA also offers various scholarships, including the Pine Tree State Pledge and UMA $10K that offer no cost, or low cost, tuition to qualified students.

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Trident University International Launches New Associate-Level Cybersecurity Program

Enrollment is open now for Trident’s third associate-level program, Associate of Science in Cybersecurity.

CHANDLER, Ariz. (PRWEB) November 30, 2020

Trident University International (Trident), a member of the American InterContinental University System has introduced a new Associate of Science in Cybersecurity (ASC) program. This is Trident’s third associate-level program.

The aim of this online associate program is to equip students with relevant knowledge, skills, and abilities to pursue relevant professional roles within the public and private sectors. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of information security analysts is projected to grow at a rate of 31 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than average for all occupations.1

Coursework is structured to teach students system and networking terminology, give them an understanding of the foundational concepts associated with computer systems, networks, and network security, and provide the basics needed to be able to identify and use information sources and tools to respond to expected and unexpected cybersecurity events in an ethical manner.

Successful graduates of this program will have covered material that reflects the professional content of the CompTIA A+, CompTIA Security+, and Ethical Hacker certifications. While Trident coursework engages the content of these certifications, students should be aware that additional studying and work experience will be necessary to pass these exams.2

Enrollment is now open for Trident’s Associate of Science in Cybersecurity program.

1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Information Security Analysts, on the Internet at (visited November 29, 2020). Conditions in your area may vary.

2 Trident cannot guarantee that graduates of this program will be eligible to take third party certification examinations. Certification requirements for taking and passing these exams are controlled by outside entities and are subject to change without notice to Trident.

About Trident University International

Founded in 1998, Trident University International is a member of the American InterContinental University System, which is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission ( Trident uses the EdActive™ learning approach, which employs case-based learning in an online setting to teach real-world relevant critical thinking skills designed to enhance the lives and education of students. Trident offers quality associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs and certificates, led by a qualified faculty team, over 80% of whom have doctoral degrees. Trident has nearly 27,000 alumni, of which more than 22,000 have a military affiliation and has received acknowledgements from Washington Monthly, Military Times, and Military Advanced Education & Transition for their dedication to student success. Visit or call at (855) 290-0290 to learn more about Trident’s wide range of educational options.

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