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What is the sahara dust storm?

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Back in June of 2020, The massive Sahara dust cloud that caused air quality problems in the Caribbean hit the US. The dense dust plumes, which are big enough to be picked up via satellite images, struck Mississippi’s Gulf Coast after churning thousands of miles from the African desert.

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Known as the Saharan, Air Layer, (SAL), this dry dust plume commonly forms from late spring through early fall, moving out into the tropical Atlantic Ocean. Saharan dust tracks as far west as the Caribbean Sea, Florida and the Gulf of Mexico each year – a 5,000-mile-long journey.

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