A CONSPIRACY theory suggesting there will be a world-ending solar flare on September 24 has taken root on TikTok.
It's the latest in a long line of apocalyptic claims on social media.
Rumors of a solar flare set to destroy Earth spread on social media because of a misunderstood politician.
In the video, Metz said: “Dear Colleagues…September 24, 2022, will be remembered by all of us as a day which we will say, 'I remember exactly where I was.'"
The claims are unfounded and there is no evidence of a catastrophe brewing.
Metz's speech occurred in February, and the politician simply misspoke.
According to fact-checking website Lead Stories: "On February 27, 2022, just days after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Merz spoke of the first pictures seen, and first thoughts in the minutes after receiving news of the war."
"He misspoke when he referred to the date, saying "September 24, 2022," when he intended to say "February 24, 2022."
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Solar flares, even at their most extreme, are not able to cut through Earth's atmosphere and hurt humans directly.
Alex Young, Associate Director for Science in the Heliophysics Science Division at Nasa's Goddard Space Flight Center, said "Even in the largest events that we've seen in the past 10,000 years, we see that the effect is not enough to damage the atmosphere such that we are no longer protected," in a speech cited by LiveScience.
Radiation from solar flares can disrupt power grids and satellites, which could set off a chain of events where there is danger, but storms this severe are rare.
A solar flare wouldn't blindside researchers.
The Sun is closely monitored by spacecraft and ground telescopes for forecasting space weather.
The stakes of misinformation on social media are high.
The September 24 solar flare conspiracy demonstrated once again how fast inaccurate information can spread.