Cooking oil can stop storm surge, Mrs. U candidate reveals

Published December 4, 2018, 4:16 PM

by James A. Loyola

Cooking oils have stellar benefits. But did you know that droplets of cooking oil can stop storm surge and eventually save lives?

This was revealed by “storm chaser” Ria Persad, who is representing Trinidad and Tobago in the Mrs. Universe 2018 beauty pageant which will be held in Cebu City on Dec. 8.

ia Persad of Trinidad and Tobago. (Photo by Joy Arguil)
ia Persad of Trinidad and Tobago. (Photo by Joy Arguil)

“This has been proven over a hundred years but still not everybody knows this. A Harvard professor did this. He went to a lake that had big waves. And with one tablespoon of cooking oil, dripped it, and within half an acre, it calmed down the waves,” revealed Persad, an astrophysicist and mathematician, during an exclusive interview at The Fort in Taguig City Monday.

Persad, 44 shared: “If you put droplets of cooking oil, it will calm down the waves. And I went to Siargao to Cloud 9, and I got some cooking oil, palm oil. I had permission from DOST (Department of Science and Technology), Department of Agriculture (DA) and other departments. I took my barrel of cooking oil and we trickled it into one of the biggest surf waves in Cloud 9. It killed the waves!”

“What’s killing people from supertyphoons are the storm surges. Eighty percent of the damage from super typhoon is from the surge. It’s not even from the wind but from storm surge. Right before the surge, spray some cooking and it will calm down the waves. And we can save lives,” Persad added.

Persad says her team already presented this scientific research to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA).

“Pagasa is very supportive of this. So what’s with oil on water? I think there’s some kind of attraction between the two. More researches are being done about this,” said Persad, who is set to start her research on tsunami.

Persad has been staying in the Philippine for more than a year now, doing humanitarian work. . She was educated at Harvard, Princeton and Cambridge where she earned a degree in mathematics and physics. Shealso worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Aside from her fascination for science, Persadis also passionate about arts and music since she was 5. She has appeared on “Oprah” and “CNN Living” and held piano concerts from Rome, Italy to Carnegie Hall in New York.