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Contrails vs. Chemtrails: Inside the DebatePosted: May 21, 2010 12:00 AM CDT
Updated: May 21, 2010 11:21 AM CDT
Treasure Valley, Idaho -- Weather modification. Russian defense. Asian mafia. Those are just some of the many theories behind why some say "chemtrails" are real.
They claim some planes are spraying chemicals in the air that then fall to the ground, hurting our environment, our crops, and our health. Others say no, they don't exist.
Some Treasure Valley residents say we need to look up, and keep a closer eye on what we're seeing in the skies. A local man known as "Mr. Smith" says normal condensation trails are ice crystals that come of jet aircraft engines, and only last in the sky for 16 seconds or so. Meanwhile, chemtrails don't dissipate quickly, and end up spreading out in the sky, and Smith is worried about potential health effects.
"It's a composition between barium salt and aluminum and also polymer fibers. These chemicals, they're being sprayed on us every other day and we're breathing them in," said Smith.
Another big question is if chemtrails exist, why? Some point to weather modification or communication systems, while others say more sinister acts could be at work.
"They also use it for defense. I don't want to get too deep into that. I'll leave it up to the viewer to kinda look into that themselves," said Smith.
Smith is not alone in his concerns. The Internet is filled with thousands, if not millions, of articles, websites, blogs and videos on chemtrails. Smith says one person in particular adds credibility to the issue.
"If you google A.C. Griffith, he's a former N.S.A. employee, had C.I.A. top clearance, and he was one of the few people who made it inside this program to live and talk about it," said Smith.
FOX 12 checked in with the Idaho Division of Air Quality and officials told us their monitors measure what's in the air at low levels, not high altitudes. But even if what's up there made it down here, the agency says it doesn't have the technology to pinpoint just where it all came from. So the particulates could come from cars, or factories, or any source. Air quality leaders add there are traces of metal in the air, but that's common in cities of industry, and levels here are not alarming.
"It's baloney. I mean clearly we never have experienced this. People know, the ones who pay attention know."
According to him, chemtrails last longer in the sky, spread out, and block the sun.
"I'm just angered. I wanna be able to look up and see the blue sky, and enjoy the sunshine on my face," said Smith.
But a contrails fact sheet sent to Fox 12 by the EPA, NASA, N.O.A.A., and FAA explains that "persistent contrails" -- made of frozen water vapor -- stick around and grow in the sky when humidity is high. The Air Force agrees.
"The upper atmospheric conditions also define how long the contrails will hang in place, how long it takes for them to dissipate," says Col. James McGovern with the Mountain Home Air Force Base.
"Certain days they're higher than others, certain days they're lower that others; it happens at different altitudes," counters a resident calling himself "Mr. Jones," who says he didn't think much about contrails until he kept seeing more of them, lasting longer, in gridlike patterns.
Then he started doing his own research.
"This is kinda shrouded in mystery and authorities, officials we can ask questions of about this kinda have blanket answers," said Jones.
But McGovern says people should not be worried about the white trails in the sky.
"I can tell you there's no aircraft, at least in the military, that produces any kind of chemical off the engines that's being dropped intentionally on populations," he said.
Meanwhile, Jones says people should dig deeper and come to their own conclusions.
"The more awareness that's out there, that's gonna create some pressure where at some point there's gonna have to be some answers. And it's gonna have to come from the people responsible for doing this. And awareness is a powerful thing," said Jones.
Chemtrails were included as a term for "exotic weapons systems" in the first draft of U.S. House Bill 2977, known as the Space Preservation Act of 2001. The term was taken out in later versions and the bill never made it out of committee.
There are plenty of opinions on all sides of the chemtrails issue, so if you'd like to weigh in, please post your comments below.
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"Chemtrails" on the Internet, Radio and Television
TREASURE VALLEY, ID - Most of us are used to seeing the long white trails from aircraft in the sky, known as contrails. But when those trails spread out and don't dissipate quickly, some locals get worried. They claim toxic chemicals are being sprayed from planes, and they join others around the world, concerned about what they call "chemtrails."
The question of chemtrails has been on the news nationwide. KSLA News 12 in Louisiana even took a resident's collection of water and particles to a lab, finding barium levels three times higher than EPA standards allow. Some claim chemtrails can interrupt T.V. weather forecasts, when the government sends out what's known as "chaff" to experiment with the radar system.
The Discovery Channel took on the topic, broadcasting an in-depth series on whether or not chemtrails exist. "We haven't seen any evidence of strange chemicals," said one scientist. Meanwhile, a journalist told Discovery, "Air traffic controllers have privately expressed concern to us, the investigators, of public health concerns, because of particulate matter coming down that could very well be bringing down viruses, fungi and bacteria that lives and breeds in the upper atmosphere."
We all know you can't believe everything you see on the internet, but a Google search brings up more than 1.3 million results, while searching "chemtrails" on Youtube, and you'll find ten different categories, and more than 51,000 video postings. In those, one viewer recorded video of white streaks in the sky, noting a familiar tic-tac-toe pattern. In another video, Rosalie Bertell, an epidemiologist, commented, "It's not natural to have something criss-crossing in your sky and staying around for hours."
Radio also addresses the issue. A.C. Griffith, a man who had top secret security clearance associated with the C.I.A. and N.S.A., is considered by many believers to be a credible source. On radio show "The Power Hour," he claimed to be one of the only people to get into the military aerosol program he described as Operation Cloverleaf. "It's a mix of barium salt, not coming out of engines, coming out of aerosols." Griffith called chemtrails "the most secretive thing I have ever encuntered; people have died over this, talking about it."
Government agencies and the military dispute the existence of chemtrails, saying contrails are simply ice particles at different elevations and temperatures. Some locals says there's more to the story, and while you should take what you learn with a grain of salt, concerned residents are glad to see the internet, television and radio getting involved.
One man says, "Clearly people aren't crazy; they're seeing their blue skies disappear and get hit with a veil of this stuff; they're tired and they want answers!"