Ethiopia- Massive dust storm hits Dire Dawa


A massive dust storm hits Dire Dawa, in eastern Ethiopia and surrounding areas. According to local reports, the storm lasted for few hours.
Assistant Prof. Yonas Tadese, a geography lecturer at Dire Dawa University told state-run ENA that the phenomena is the result of a low air pressure that moved to the northern hemisphere.

The cloud of dust that starts from Djibouti and passed through Somaliland before entering Ethiopia, could ruin everything as it moves very fast.

However, the chain of highlands in Eastern Ethiopia that are covered with vegetation could help to minimize its speed.

Witnesses in Dire-Dawa and Kulbi said the cloud of dust has covered the sunlight for a while, which left the areas dark.


  1. The main problem is the scarce vegetation and grass that used to cover lowlands around DD and beyond vanished decades ago. The erosion and desertification process and signes are self evident. You can’t miss it if you fligh over, drive or walk around.Expect more dust stormes and desperate news now and then unless something is done sooner than later. In the meantime, bouno fortuno to the queen of the desert– Dire Dawa–that every regime and its miscreants from Haile Selallase to Woyane bandits exploited with nothing or little in return.

  2. Desertification is expanding through out ethiopia. Over grazing, lack of land use planning, lack of good leadership at government, woreda and district levels , war, land ownership strategies etc all contribute to the wasting away of our country. Next will be the surrounding towns and countryside.
    What is the solution. Return the land to the people. Private ownership of land will go a long way to solve the problem

  3. Sit tight and hold on to your seats!!! This is going be life for many especially in the eastern part of the country. Those of you who might have lived in the former British Protectorate of Aden will remember the misery and havoc this weather phenomenon brings to your front door. It suffocates AC’s and every modern amenity in its paths. Those who suffer from respiratory diseases including COPD or Asthma will not have a chance with Khamsin. This does not surprise me since so much has been said and written about the complete denudation of every forested land in populated location. Mother Nature calamities such as persistent droughts are not new to the people and the country and not the main reason for the scarring of the landscape but it was the people themselves. They multiplied like worms overwhelming the forest for firewood and residential buildings. Those of you who are very familiar with weather of lowland Western Hararghe know very well that even in the old days rainfall was not always guaranteed. So when there was not enough for grazing they used to pack up and move to southern part of the Chercher Highlands. On one occasion I had the change to travel with my kin and kits during school vacation days all the way to Boke area and close the Bale Ginir region. The area where my relatives lived was bone dry and ready to flare up into raging fires but the area we moved with all out cattle was so green and lush covered with blinding forest. The entire area from the vicinity west and south of Asabot all the way to the Bale border was covered with thick forest where the mountains were full of timber. Now take a look at the entire area. Except some isolated green spots here and there it has turned into the Danakil and Ogaden deserts because the people in their tens of millions and frenzied growing have cut down every living, breathing tree to feed and put roofs on their exploding families. I will give you an example. My immediate relatives who numbered about 30 in 1970 have now multiplied to more than 400. That is not even based on hand count but from what I was told. Some of you may say like ‘well, you Muslims marry to more than wives’. But you are wrong. Those with more than one wife are extremely few. The fact is those with single wives have more children than those with more than one. It seems that more than 5 or 7 in family size is a magic number. Such out of control breeding is not confined in one region but is everywhere. Some of the scraped areas may not be rehabbed to their glory days and will maintain their xerotic status for generations. I am afraid they will end up being a lost cause.

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