Massive Sahara desert dust plume drifting toward the United States

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https://www.cbsnews.com/news/sahara-dese...ed-states/

EXCERPTS: While summer dust plumes are a common occurrence, the one sailing through the Caribbean right now is generating quite the buzz. That's because it appears to be one of the most extreme in recent memory and it's heading for the southeastern states. [...] These plumes of Saharan dust, termed Saharan Air Layer (SAL) by meteorologists, are whipped up by strong wind storms crossing the Sahara desert. ... The dust hitches a ride along the trade winds, a belt of east-to-west moving winds near the equator which become firmly established during summertime. ... they typically become diffuse and diluted by the time they reach the Caribbean. However, so far, this particular dust layer is defying the odds.

[...] The dust is so thick that the Barbados Meteorological Services issued a "Severe Dust Haze Warning" urging residents to take action due significantly reduced visibility and potential respiratory problems for people who experience difficulty breathing.

[...] Over the next few days the thickest of the dust layer will stay south of Florida, over Cuba. By late this week it will overspread Texas and the rest of the Southeast, making for hazy skies and colorful sunrises and sunsets. ... For most people the dust is merely a nuisance, making for hazy skies and often leaving a dirty film on cars as it falls out of the air. But for people with preexisting respiratory ailments, it can trigger breathing difficulty.

The dust is most commonly known to be a hurricane killer. Anyone who has lived in Hurricane Alley can tell you that these dry, dusty layers subdue the moisture needed to feed the hurricane engine.

[...] Surprisingly, much of the soil, and nutrients in the soil, in places like South Florida and the Caribbean are composed of African dust which has settled over millions of years. Studies show that nutrients from African dust in subtropical and tropical soils may be critical to sustaining vegetation. For the oceans it can be both a blessing and a curse... (MORE - details)
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