What Causes Lightning To Be Colored?

Question: What causes lightning to be colored rather than the usual white or blue?

Answer: Lightning can appear to be many different colors.

It depends on what the light travels through to get to your eyes.

In snowstorms, where it is somewhat rare, pink and green are often described as colors of lightning.

Haze, dust, moisture, raindrops and any other particles in the atmosphere will affect the color by absorbing or diffracting a portion of the white light of lightning.

See also: Incredible Catatumbo Lightning Phenomenon – World’s Greatest Everlasting Storm


 Source: NSSL/ NOOA