Ski resorts aren’t the only places creating snow.

A couple years ago, China found itself buried in snow created by pumping chemicals into the air, prompting numerous highways to close.

The snow was created by shooting silver iodide–about 313 cigarette-sized sticks of the stuff–into the sky, which made the snow already lingering in the clouds a bit heavier.

Yingchun Guo, a senior engineer at the provincial meteorological observatory, stated that the snow is beneficial, bringing much needed moisture to the soil in the drought-ridden area.

In the end, 12 highways in Hebei province, which surrounds the capital city of Beijing, were shut down.

The snow started on a Wednesday and was expected to continue into Thursday evening with flurries.