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Killer Dust Storms Strike India, Middle East

Posted by feww on May 12, 2010

Desertification: A Major Mechanism of Collapse

Killer Dust Storms Wreak Havoc in India, Middle East

On May 7, 2010 a dust storm and squall struck two Indian states of Uttar Pradesh (pop. 192 million) and Bihar (pop. 85 million) killing at least 57.

The following MODIS images show dust storms over a large section of Middle East including Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as the U.S. State of Washington:

Dust over Syria, Turkey and Iraq

Dust blankets Syria’s Fertile Crescent in this natural-color image from May 11, 2010. The pale cloud of dust masks the farm-lined Euphrates River in the right half of the image and extends to the Turkish border. The dust is blowing east toward Iraq. MODIS on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image on the afternoon of May 11.  Daily images of Syria are available from the MODIS Team. Image and Caption: NASA E/O [edited for brevity.] Click image to enlarge. Download large image (4 MB, JPEG)

Dust Storm over Afghanistan and Pakistan

On May 5, a thick band of dust extended along hundreds of kilometers of the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. This photo-like image, taken by MODIS on NASA’s Terra satellite, shows the southernmost portion of the plume. The large image shows the entire plume over a broader region. The dust is thick enough to hide the ground from view. It is not clear from this image where the dust is coming from, but dry wetlands in this region are a common source of dust. One such wetland, the Hamun-i-Mashkel is in the lower left corner of the image. The dried wetland is a lighter shade of brown than the surrounding desert. Image and Caption: NASA E/O [edited for brevity.]
Click image to enlarge. Download large image (732 KB, JPEG)

Spring Dust Storm in Washington

A dark plume of dust extends across nearly half of Washington state in these natural-color images from May 3, 2010. MODIS acquired the image from NASA’s Terra satellite at 12:40 p.m. local time.Image and Caption: NASA E/O [edited for brevity.]
Click image to enlarge. Download large 12:40 p.m. image (281 KB, JPEG)

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