Saharan dust cloud forecast to reach Iberian peninsula this weekend

Saharan dust cloud forecast to reach Iberian peninsula this weekend

Image of the dust cloud reaching the Iberian peninsula. Credit: Twitter@CopernicusECMWF

A large dust cloud will reach the Iberian peninsula this weekend according to the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service

Aerosol forecasts from the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS), today, Friday, May 20, observed yet another large plume of Saharan dust moving north across southern and central Europe from May 20-23.

CAMS data monitor the dust transport every year and throughout all stages, while also noting that this year has shown, and continues to show, high levels of dust being transported across the Mediterranean and parts of Europe.

The Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) forecasts since Tuesday, May 17, have been predicting another large plume of dust with very high values of aerosol optical depth (AOD) and dust concentrations travelling northwards across western and central Europe.

This dust has already been reaching the Iberian Peninsula with forecasts showing higher values arriving on May 21-22. On Sunday, May 22, the dust will also cross central Europe.

CAMS tracks all stages of dust transportation from the Sahara Desert every year and has been providing continuous updates on the severity of this year’s dust transport, including the high values seen over western Europe during mid-March, as well as dust crossing the Atlantic, heading towards the Caribbean.

The severe dust storms affecting the Middle East throughout May 2022, significantly impacting Iraq are being monitored by the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service as well. CAMS provides continuous data and forecasts tracking long-range dust transport both on a European and global scale.

Data and tools provided are free-to-use and serve as a tool to help citizens, businesses, and policymakers make informed decisions on a continuous basis with 24/7 air quality forecast data.


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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at