As a devastating winter storm hit Texas leaving many in dire situations, another problem emerged online. Viral videos claiming snow was "created by the government" or "fake" started circulating on social media.
In these videos, people try and light some snowballs on fire and claim they burned instead of melting. However, there's a scientific explanation behind this reaction and such videos are not evidence of "fake" snow. Conspiracy theories claiming to prove about "man-made snow" have been debunked many times in the past.
In one such video, a woman off-camera is heard saying, "Thank you Bill Gates for trying to (expletive) trick us that this is real snow. You'll see it's not melting, and it's going to burn. Snow don't burn(sic)." She's seen bringing a lighter to a snowball.
Astronomer Phil Plait had earlier debunked a similar claim in a YouTube video and explained the science behind it. Plait explained that the snow does melt, but it doesn't appear to drip because the remaining snow is porous and absorbs the water.
Plait also explained the chemical process behind the burn mark in the snowball and said, "It's not that the snowball is scorching or burning, but it's soot adhering to the snowball."