Climate Change in the Sahara Desert


The Sahara Desert climate is known to have the most irregular climate all over the world. Six thousand years ago it was covered with tropical savanna grassland (green home) and lakes in between. However due to changes it turned to be the world’s largest warm desert. This process is called desertification.

According to some researches conducted, the drying up process gradually took place. The desertification caused animals and vegetation to be blown out. Lives of people got affected with regard to employment, business and culture. People settled in rain pools, green valleys, and rivers.

Subtropical climate in Northern land is dry because of regular presence of high pressure cells over the Cancer tropic. Annually it has a high temperature range. The area has two rainy seasons. Rainfall is approximately measured 3 inches yearly specifically December to March. August brings maximum rain with possibility of flash floods. There is no rain during the months of May to June.

Dry tropical climate is in the southern area because of steady continental air and unstable marine air movements. Temperature range during summer is 17.5 degree Celsius and 15 degree Celsius during winter. Snow is present in higher elevations. Annual rainfall measurement is 5 inches. In the Western region, there is lesser rainfall and lower temperature. Fog is visible and the place is more humid.

Variations in climate (wet and dry) for over hundred thousand of years is caused by climate change linked with solar insulation and earth orbital parameters.

Generally other climate conditions are:

o Northeast areas suffer sand storms and dust devils. Desiccating and dust laden winds during early spring.

o Unusual rainfall but heavy and long lasting.

o Harshest climate in the planet.

o Climate is categorized as warmer and drier.

o Higher mountains receive more rainfall (Tassili N Ajier and Tibesti)

o Daytime temperature is high. It may rise to as high as 57.7 degree Celsius.

o Freezing temperature from December to February

o Half of Sahara receives 10 cm of rainfall in a year while the other half receives less than 2 cm.

The desiccating winds are named as follows:

o Haboob is known as the wild sand laden wind

o Khamsin is the 50 days wind sweep during March to May

o Harmattan is known as Twi which means tear breath apart

o Simoun is also known as Simoon. It is hot and suffocating dust laden winds which may lead to whirlwinds.

o Sirocco is southeast winds with reddish dust and heavy rains

The issue of global warming cannot be belittled. It not only affects the famous Sahara Desert but also the rest of the world. It is a serious environmental condition that we should all take action to save our world.

Source by David Urmann


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