Debunked: SKYSCRATCH - The Geoengineering/Chemtrail Cover Up


Senior Member.
I recently discovered yet another anti "chemtrail" movie on Youtube called SKYSCRATCH - The Geoengineering/Chemtrail Cover Up

Edit: Added more up-to-date information concerning contrail heating effects.

This movie contains a number of misassumption and errors which I will go through in this thread.

The movie begins with the statement:
"Social control is best managed through fear." - Michael Crichton

The irony of this is that it reflects the conspiracy community pretty well. The only difference is that the conspiracy thinkers are managing themselves by inventing things to fear.

Next up the the movie shows a series of news reports on climate change, the typical emotionally loaded "doomsday scenario" stuff climate change deniers often mistake for reflecting actual climate science reports.

Image of "Skull and Bones Member" John Kerry!


Claim: In the 80s scientists predicted a climate catastrophe by 1990, now predictions are set to 2040. Climate science is only scare tactics to make people believe a lie.
Reality: These predictions were just sensational media reports, not actual scientific consensus.

The movie shows a lot of old NBC News footage, amongst them an old news report from 1983 (featuring Jessica Savitch) speculating about "catastrophic green house effect by the 1990s". The movie then compares this with a more recent segment from ABC News speculating about "catastrophic green house effect" in 2040.

The premiss here seem to be that these types of reports cannot be trusted. But Skyscratch mistakes news sensationalism with actual science.


The problem is that the report referenced in the NBC News segment (featuring Jessica Savitch) does not come from Savitch herself (as erroneously stated in Skyscratch).

The actual climate report she referenced was published by the EPA in 1983, called "Can We Delay A Greenhouse Warming?". This report does not say anything about any "catastrophic green house effects by the 1990s". This claim was solely the interpretation done by Savitch or some news editor on NBC. This is the kind of deliberate exaggeration you can expect from news channels who want their viewers to stick to the news.

This is the reason why one should not look in the news for science. Look at the science for science.

Here are a number of quotes from the EPA report that shows quite clearly that it does not make any such "predictions" about catastrophic green house effects by the 90s. On the contrary, the report is quite humble that the uncertainty about the future is hard to estimate, given that we knew much less about the complexity of the climate in the early 80s compared to today. And it does mention certain positive aspects of the climate change as well. Not very alarmistic.

"While the physical laws underlying the theory are well established an straightforward, the assumption that all else will remain constant is not reasonable. The global climatic system is extremely complex. It consists of many interrelated components that, in themselves, are only partially understood." - 1-3

"Many parts of the world are likely to suffer from these changes, yet others are likely to benefit." - 1-5

"Of course, the precision and detail of the predictions of the climatic change must be greatly improved if they are to be used in public works and resource planning." - 1-10

"However, despite the useful information produced by experiments and field studies, much uncertainty remains." - 2-21

"Models that estimate the climatic effects of this change in atmosphere, along with increase in other greenhouse gases, are by no means exact, but provide strong evidence of the likelihood of unprecedented rates of temperature increases during the next 120 years." - 2-24
Content from External Source
(Link to the report)

Science did not do the scare tactics here, a news station did, with the purpose of attracting viewers. This is not a scientific source.

What follows next in Skyscratch is yet another speculative news report, this time from 1978, called "In Search Of The Coming Ice Age" (view full here)

As an example of the speculative nature of this report, it takes legitimate research about the formation of ice ages, such as the Milancovich cycle, (mentioned at 13:00) and makes it appear to be in support of the notion that the snow storm in 1976-77 was the sign of an imminent ice age. But the Milancovich cycle (the continuous change in the tilt of earth's axis and shape of the orbit) is a process that takes tens of thousands of years, and one harsh winter is hardly evidence for an imminent ice age.

This is not mentioned in "In Search Of The Coming Ice Age", which clearly shows what kind of speculative level we are dealing with here. This news segment is not representative of the scientific community and the climate science at the time.

The background to the "global cooling" theory was that in the end of the 1970s there was still a lingering concern that the earth was heading for a global cooling (despite a growing number of scientific literature stating the opposite). The concerns were due to several factors, mainly that there was a slight (but temporary) cooling trend during 1940 to 1960, and the amount of atmospheric aerosols due to industrial pollution were increasing causing global dimming. But this was before proper global temperature records had been established, so at the time there was no hard evidence showing if the temperature was going to heat, or cool.

As a parallel, this is the same type of speculative news material we have seen in recent years now that surface temperatures have "paused" during the past decade. A snow storm hits and, voila, news channels begin to speculate about imminent ice ages yet again.

But of course, surface temperatures alone isn't what makes out the climate, if you take ocean temperatures into account, we see that there is no "pause" in the global warming whatsoever. What is interesting to read is that even the papers referenced in the EPA report from 1983 mention that oceans will absorb plenty of the heat, so this phenomenon is not something new to science. It requires more data than just a decade to establish if a "pause" is really happening or not. As an example, the surface temperature between 1987 to 1997 gave the appearance of "pausing" as well. But if we extend the graph into the following decade, it becomes obvious that the surface temperature didn't pause at all:


Claim: Scientists predicted the earth was going into global cooling in the 70s.
Reality: By the 70s a large majority of climate science papers predicted a global warming.

Reading what the scientific literature during the 70s actually predicted about climate change tells us quite clearly that the news segment is speculative and not representative for the climate science at the time.

Going back to Skyscratch, all this transitions into a montage of various news articles about carbon taxes. The film suggests that since you cannot trust science therefore carbon taxes must be a scam.
What you should not trust are speculative news channels, and people confusing speculative news with actual science.


Claim: Climate variations have always existed in the past, thus the recent change is just natural.
Reality: It's the unprecedented rate of the change that is concerning, no natural cycle can explain the rapid climate change except anthropogenic green house gasses.

The narrator says: "Climate has always changed on earth. It has never remained the same temperature."

While this statement is in itself true, saying that the recent climate change is a natural thing is simply wrong. The issue is not that the climate is changing for whatever reason. The issue the rate of the change, which is unprecedented by any natural process measured before:

The Complete Guide to Climate Change (source)
Over the shortest Milankovich cycle of about 20,000 years (5°C warming in 10,000 years, followed by similar cooling over subsequent 10,000 years), global mean temperature increase/decrease by 0.025°C per century. By comparison, the earth's average mean temperature over the past 60 years has increased at a rate of just over 0.1°C/decade, and by 0.2°C/decade since 1980.
Content from External Source


Then the film features some old man who says that CO2 has always been the major gas in the atmosphere. Yes, and no. You can't look back at the earth as it was many million years ago, and compare today's change with historical processes that took hundreds of thousands, or even millions of years to change. This man says that if we halve the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, we would have no terrestrial plants. This is of course an unrealistic statement, halving today's amount would leave us at the same level we've been on for the last thousand years, and last time I checked, terrestrial plants thrived during that time period. And sure, CO2 is not a pollutant in a sense that it is toxic, but the green house properties of the gas has been known for more than a century now, and the effects of setting the carbon cycle out of equilibrium by putting excessive amounts of carbon into it is very obvious to everyone as well.

Claim: Changes in solar output is responsible for the recent climate change.
Reality: This view is not shared by the scientific community, and total solar irradiance does not correlate with recent climate change.

The sun is blamed for recent climate change, showing an internet tabloid article stating that it does. The reason why a tabloid article is shown instead of proper science paper is because the few science papers claiming the sun is to blame got refuted by the the science in return.

Sunspot activity has remained stable since the 1950s, so is it realistic to blame the sun? (source)

Science journalist Peter Hadfield (Potholer54) does a very good job explaining the science on natural cycles and how they in some cases change climate, but not in the context of the recent climate change: Climate Change -- isn't it natural? and Are cosmic rays causing global warming?

There is also talk about the so called "Medieval Warm Period" in this movie which I'm taking the liberty to let Potholer64 sort out for me: Medieval Warm Period -- fact vs. fiction Much that is claimed about this period just isn't true, or at best, unknown. Climate change deniers love to use it though.

In other words, this old man is clearly not a scientist because he does not reflect what science actually tells us about these historical events and climates.

So after this severe misrepresentation of what the scientific debate on climate actually looks like, Skyscratch moves on to the actual "chemtrail" part.

It features the classic clip where Al Gore "admits chemtrails", and a clip with David Keith saying that out of the climate engineering methods proposed, solar radiation management (SRM) seem to be the "most likely one to work". There is no mention in either these clips saying that any SRM program is currently taking place in our skies.

More montages of various tabloids saying that skies will turn white from SRM. This is getting predictable and a bit boring...


The movie presents a number of reasons why the skies are being sprayed:
1. Military applications (showing "Owning the Weather in 2025")
2. Comercial applications (selling "good weather")
3. Population control (killing humans)

"Owning the Weather in 2025" is a report about future fictional scenarios were weather can be controlled in situations of war. It's not a plan or guide, it's a hypothetical document.

Skyscratch is, like many other films before it, confusing local weather modification with climate modification.

Skyscratch is saying that climate engineering is already happening "under the guise of military chaff". The movie shows a series of weather broadcasts mentioning what looks like clouds showing up on the radar. But chaff isn't something secret. And it's even shown in the segment how a chaff release looks like, it does not look anything like the white trails commonly associated with "chemtrails". I don't really understand why the chaff story is even mentioned in this film. It just makes everything even more confusing.


Claim: "Chaff" is a cover story for "chemtrails".
Reality: Chaff releases look nothing like the trails commonly associated with "chemtrails". Chaff consists of relatively large metallic or plastic fibres, which cannot be breathed without noticing.

Skyscratch claims that there are health problems from "chaff". But real chaff are fibres ranging from 3 to 7 cm long. This is not exactly something you breathe without noticing. It is hardly the "micro particulate aluminium pieces" the narrator claims it to be.

Claim: Software that erase chaff from weather maps is evidence for a cover up.
Reality: Such software is developed because chaff releases are disrupting the weather service, making presentation difficult.

Claim: Weatherman states that chaff is only used in situations of war, so chaff releases over US soil is evidence for "chemtrails".
Reality: Chaff releases can take place as part of military exercises. Exercises involving chaff are not very common but sometime happens.

The narrator express concern about aluminium exposure.

Claim: Aluminium is linked to Alzheimer's disease.
Reality: A link between Alzheimer's and aluminium was once considered many decades ago. No such causation or correlation has ever be established, so the hypothesis is long since discredited.

Here is what the world's biggest Alzheimer's organisation thinks about this (source):
During the 1960s and 1970s, aluminum emerged as a possible suspect in Alzheimer’s. This suspicion led to concern about exposure to aluminum through everyday sources such as pots and pans, beverage cans, antacids and antiperspirants. Since then, studies have failed to confirm any role for aluminum in causing Alzheimer’s. Experts today focus on other areas of research, and few believe that everyday sources of aluminum pose any threat.
Content from External Source

Now, at this point the narrative of Skyscratch is getting a bit confusing...

Chaff is a cover story for the geoengineering program...
...which is s a cover story for any of the three "likely reasons" we are being sprayed mentioned earlier.

Will the film straighten this out for us? Let's move on and find out.


Claim: Haze such as in the image above is evidence for the "whitening of the skies" associated with SRM.
Reality: This is a natural weather condition called cirrostratus.

Skyscratch moves on by showing us footage of what is actually a cirrostratus cloud layer. It's a natural weather condition often considered by "chemtrail" believers to be a sign of the "whitening effect of SRM". It is also commonly associated with "chemtrails" because the high humidity at high altitudes that causes persistent contrails can also generate these cirrostratus clouds. But contrails and cirrostratus are two completely independent phenomena.

Claim: There is evidence for global dimming.
Reality: The global dimming stopped in the 1990s thanks to clean air acts, putting less pollution into the atmosphere.

Next we have the now outdated BBC documentary "Global Dimming" from 2005, which was released the same year as a number of studies confirmed that we have actually experienced a global brightening during the past decades thanks to less black carbon particulates in the air from pollution regulations.
It is important to note that the influence of China's coal burning is starting to reverse the trend yet again.

Skyscratch is missing the point that normal condensation acts as a dimmer for sunlight as well, increased contrail formation does contribute to global dimming because it is essentially getting more cloudy more frequently. This problem has been acknowledged for decades and is considered to be a pollutant issue in about the same way as excessive car traffic causes an increase in aerosols near the ground. Cars create aerosols in forms of exhaust particulates, planes create aerosols mostly in forms of ice clouds.


Claim: BBC and CBS contradict each other.
Reality: No they don't (read the section below).

What is important to note is that "global dimming" refers to the decrease in solar irradiance on the earth's surface. Whether this is affecting the climate or not is irrelevant to the definition. Skyscratch seem to make global dimming synonymous with global cooling, which is wrong. Neither BBC or CBS are scientific sources, but they don't necessarily contradict each other. It's true that contrails block sun during the day, contributing to global dimming to some degree, but at the same time they trap heat during the night when there is no sun to block, hence the net effect of contrail occurrence have been suggested to raise temperatures. One study done during the 9/11 attacks when all planes were grounded seemed to confirm this, but more recent studies have suggested that the effect is actually very small: On contrail climate sensitivity | Can aircraft trails affect climate?


The film goes on by showing a montage of political debates with ill-informed conservatives arguing against climate change. No real science here. Just bad politics. As an example, professor Fritz Vahrenholt is mentioned together with his book "The Cold Sun: Why the Climate Crisis Isn't Happening". Not that this book didn't receive criticism and counter arguments, but why does a professor choose to publish his research as conventional book instead of a proper scientific journal? Because it isn't science.

Claim: Geoengineering scientist David Keith says scientists are already putting million of tonnes of SRM into the atmosphere.
Reality: This is quote mining, Keith is talking about already occurring aerosol pollutions from combustion engines and industries. He also mention that future SRM programs (if realized) would be a tiny addition to the pollution our industries and urbanization is already putting into the atmosphere.

Did it ever occur to the narrator that the sulphur dioxide/acid mentioned in these interviews is not the same thing as aluminium the narrator talked about earlier..? Did it also occur to the narrator that the Colbert Report is a satirical TV show?

When Keith tries to explain that we are already putting this substance into our atmosphere from conventional pollution, Skyscrath edits this part to make it look as if Keith is telling that the SRM program is already operational, spewing out "fifty million tonnes" of sulphuric acid. This is blatant dishonest quote mining. Watch the full interview here for context.

Skyscratch shows another tabloid article that says:

"Aircraft emissions pollute the air and threaten by 2050 to become one of the largest contributors to global warming, British scientists have concluded."
Content from External Source
(link to original source)

The source clearly states that carbon dioxide from air crafts are contributing to global warming, so is global warming caused by CO2 now..? I thought the movie said CO2 and climate change showed no correlation?


More "tabloid science" from the Daily Mail about "medieval warm period" (addressed by Potholer54 in this video )

End credits roll with emotional music.

Thoughts and conclusions.

Well, as I suspected before I started watching this movie it never reaches a definite a conclusion at all. It's always this endless stream of hints that something is going on and it's up to the viewer to form the ultimate conclusion how things really are.

No proof for the claims made in this film is presented whatsoever because the the ones presented fail to stand up to scrutiny for the reasons explained in this thread.

What is funny to me is that the movie does not at any point try to explain why the trails we see can not be conventional condensation. Not even once is this explained. It is as if the creator of this movie assumes everyone already knows and agrees that these trails just cannot be condensation, and there is no point explaining how and why. No effort is made to explain the difference between contrails and "chemtrails", if there is a difference.

At the same time there is very little explanation in this movie what "chemtrails" actually contain. The only thing we can make out is aluminium and sulphuric dioxide/acids. No definite answer is presented and it's mostly up to the viewer to reach some sort of conclusion.

All I see in the end is just the same tangled mess of loose ends, attempts to connect dots, and it just creates an incoherent mess that sometimes even contradicts itself. From a conspiracy perspective, this is not the worst attempt at "exposing the truth" I've seen, but it is predicable and boring.


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