- The Washington Times - Saturday, May 31, 2014

A scientist from Temple University believes he has found a way to end dangerous tornadoes along parts of the southern and Midwestern U.S.: giant walls.

Physicist Rongjia Tao said that giant walls, 100-miles wide and 1,000 feet tall, would significantly decrease the devastating effects of dangerous tornados in Tornado Alley, the Houston Chronicle reported Wednesday.

“It certainly would work, nature already tells us it works,” Mr. Tao said.


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Mr. Tao believes that the walls, placed strategically placed across the southern Texas/Louisiana border, Kansas/Oklahoma border, and one in North Dakota, would act as dams to stop powerful winds.

“Last year Washington County, Illinois, was wiped out by tornadoes. Just 50 to 60 miles east it’s also flat farmland but they never had any,” Mr. Tao said, suggesting that a small hill protected the farmland area by dispersing the winds.

Mr. Tao, who has already published his idea once and is due to be published again in International Journal for Modern Physics B, said that all of the 800 tornados that occurred in the U.S. last year could have been stopped by the walls.

However, the construction of just one wall would cost taxpayers approximately $16 billion, but would stop deadly tornados forever Mr. Tao told the newspaper.

Some experts don’t think the costs are justified.

“Everybody I know is of 100 percent agreement — this is a poorly conceived idea,” Professor Joshua Wurman of the Center for Severe Weather Research told BBC News.

“From what I can gather his concept of how tornadoes form is fundamentally flawed. Meteorologists cringe when they hear about ‘clashing hot and cold air.’ It’s a lot more complicated than that,” Mr. Wurman said.