Look-up.org.uk claim there is a conspiracy to alter the weather via chemicals injected into the atmosphere by commercial airliners. One reason given is to hamper solar power energy production because of the Oil industry etc.

We firmly believe that aerosols are being sprayed into our atmosphere already, but that it is being done at much lower altitudes, typically 18,000 – 36,000ft, by commercial aircraft.

They provide several videos as a part of their evidence. These videos show how the sky is clear and then, after quite a few airliners fly over, clouds appear out of nowhere.

Now, after watching the first video (in which the clouds only appear after about 3 minutes into the video) I can conclude that what I see is quite dramatic, clouds just appear out of nowhere and at first almost immediately disappear. They are also much thinner and darker than most clouds, and just the way that they seem to explode out of one small spot and then be so unstable. Especially as the sky was slow clear before, I have never seen such a phenomenon.

But then it also struck me that I have never actually seen clouds form, therefore this might actually just be the normal way. But I have no way of knowing. I asked a friend of mine who said that only engineered clouds behave like this, but I don't actually have any proof.

So is this normal or is this strange and potentially a sign of weather engineering or something else?

  • 3
    It's a time lapse video. If you download the video and slow down playback so you're watching in real time, it's not especially dramatic.
    – ff524
    Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 0:01
  • Related: Do contrails last long enough to explain chemtrails - this is very similar, but is talking about the contrail clouds that streak behind a plane, where this question is about regular clouds forming.
    – Oddthinking
    Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 0:39
  • 2
    Related: Do airplanes release biological or chemical agents, forming trails? - this is the general question covering the entire topic. However, if there is new evidence (spontaneous cloud formations), we should re-consider whether the general topic is right. (It is! But we should be open to reconsider in light of new evidence.)
    – Oddthinking
    Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 0:42
  • @OddThinking This doesn't look like new evidence, just old pictures rehashed with a "new" re-interpretation of the conspiracy theories. Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 5:16
  • 3
    Please do not speculate in the comments, it's not helping anyone.
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Apr 26, 2017 at 8:29

1 Answer 1


It is entirely normal and natural for clouds to form around the contrails of aircraft.

The clouds in the video are mostly cirrus. Cirrus clouds are very high clouds of ice crystals, and form in particular conditions - when there is a lot of moisture high in the atmosphere, and there are sufficient nucleation sites - that is, particles of dust or ice for the ice to form around.

These conditions are also perfect for the formation of contrails. These are lines of ice crystals formed from the exhaust of most engines. When a hydrocarbon like jet fuel is burned, the exhaust contains a fair amount of water vapour, as well as particulates - small solid particles of soot. These are a recipe for ice crystals to form.

So, given that contrails form through a very similar process to cirrus clouds, it's hardly surprising that contrails often grow to become cirrus clouds. This phenomenon has been noted since World War II, when high-flying bomber formations left huge swaths of contrails which grew into cloud cover. When air traffic in the US was grounded after the September 11th attacks, cloud cover in the US was greatly reduced.

Whether this increase in cirrus cloud is good, bad, or indifferent is still a matter of debate. It has been suggested that more cirrus cloud can reduce global warming, by reflecting more of the sun's energy away into space, but it has also been suggested they may increase global warming, by trapping more heat below them. This is still an area of active research; at this point, it's too soon to say whether steps should be taken to reduce contrails.

Contrails could be reduced by requiring aircraft to fly below the altitude at which cirrus forms - that is, below 20,000 feet. The problem is that the lower an aircraft goes, the more drag it will experience, and the less efficient its engines will be. It's unlikely that the advantages of reduced cirrus cloud would outweigh the disadvantage of burning more jet fuel.

So yes, the cloud formation seen in the video is entirely normal, and is not a sign of high-altitude chemical spraying.


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