A massive sandstorm swooped down on Queen Alia International Airport in Amman, Jordan today – a small part of an extreme weather pattern descending on the region. Strong winds sent desert sand airborne, darkening skies across the kingdom and causing near blackout conditions in Jordan’s capital city.
Springtime in Jordan brings ferocious sandstorms and a nose-clogging meteorological phenom called “khamsin”. Grab your Michael Jackson face masks and the decongestant of your choice, close the windows tight and stockpile tissues. The dry, dusty winds of khamsin are blowing across the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa and right into your sinus canals. That image […]
Sandstorms, like any kind of air pollution, know no borders. Last Wednesday a viscous sandstorm in Iran forced schools and government offices to close. The more extreme than usual storm grounded some flights, and sent a number of people to hospital as well. According to the AFP, the Iranian media is blaming countries west of […]
Traveling sandstorms force Middle Eastern countries to cooperate, despite former water disagreements. Approximately two thirds of the Middle East is comprised of desert, including as it does the largest continuous expanse of sand (in Saudi Arabia) known as Rub’ Al Khali or the empty quarter. With so little moisture there are no hovering clouds, and […]
I remember the day when it rolled in early in May, or hit us rather, like a wall. Sandstorms are common in Israel and the Middle East. This awesome force of nature is best witnessed by this aerial photo taken by Yonatan Zur. We wonder if these kind of events will increase with climate change? […]
Jinn, AKA genies, are very much alive and thriving in Islamic thought around the world. Read about jinn, and how to keep them out of your hair
Improve the quality of the air you breathe by ventilating your home and office environment.
Plans were announced today for the new Deira Mall in Dubai, which will be the largest in terms of leasable space in the entire United Arab Emirates (UAE). Development of the largest mall in the Middle East presents a blank canvas on which the developers could paint a green masterpiece, but there is not a […]
We’ve already heard the news from NASA that the Middle East will probably be uninhabitable in the next 50 years, thanks to climate change. At a recent conference in Tehran, Iran, participants were warned of an onslaught of Middle East sandstorms, expected to worsen as our world warms. “In the Middle East there has been a […]
New York City’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is hosting an exhibition on refugee shelters to kickstart dialogue on the design challenges caused by humanitarian crises. Entitled “Insecurities: Tracing Displacement and Shelter”, the show looks at emergency housing in contemporary crisis zones. It is the first time a major museum has explored the plight of the […]
Following Israel’s smart solar trees, the Dubai Municipality is rolling out a series of “community tech hubs” based on 3D printed palm trees that collect solar power. The stations are also where users can recharge their phones, tablets and laptops, enjoy free WiFi, and check in on local weather and news. The Smart Palm initiative aligns with […]
The Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) this week announced expansion of its “tidy-roofs” campaign, which kicked off last June to tackle residential buildings deemed unsightly by city officials. Back then, Raed Haddadin, director of GAM’s building control department, told the Jordan Times that the goal was to make the buildings “look more beautiful than before”. Good news for people […]
Pull free, safe drinking water straight from the sky!
Springtime in Jordan means sandstorms, not downpours, but a solid week of rain just pummeled Amman – lashing, cold, complete with thunder! Here’s how we locals beat the doldrums caused by Jordan’s Arab Spring – on the cheap!
Some countries like Canada are trying to say goodbye to human-delivered postal mail forever. But a new initiative from the United Arab Emirates puts a little 21st Century technology into the old mail carrier.
Severed goat heads, bloody and besieged by flies, lay side-by-side on a butcher’s slab. A dozen lethal serpents, coiled and poised to strike, wove back and forth before a snake charmer in the Marrakech souk.
Dubai’s record-breaking skyline is the stuff of imagination bolstered by immense wealth, a powerful combination that mostly results in epic fail architecture. A new rotating skyscraper is in planning stage, an investment in gimmickry over game-changing sustainability, moving this city a step closer to its looming 22nd Century reality as the world’s best bad building […]
Pablo Picasso once said, “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” So, it’s off to the art galleries all you in Abu Dhabi: your meteorological agencies are warning of epic dust storms ahead.
New life for old oil fields? Last year Oman inaugurated a 7MW solar pilot plant that produces steam to loosen thick, stubborn oil. Petroleum Development Oman has since hailed the four acre complex of glass houses a scorching success, and the supplier GlassPoint is preparing to become the “Ikea of solar,” Forbes reports.
Dubai is prone to frequent dust storms. A new solar panel dust particle remover made in Israel boosts power and cleans off dust at the same time Solar voltaic panels, which at their best only have about 25 percent efficiency for converting direct sunlight into electricity, have even less efficiency than this when dust and […]
Following the inauguration of Suntech’s new research centre in Arava, we speak to their Chief Technology Officer (pictured centre) about the future of renewables in the Middle East As one of the largest producers of solar panels, Suntech is undoubtedly a world player. In Israel alone, out of a total of 220 solar megawatts produced, […]
Pollen and ash in Nile river delta sediment provides evidence of ancient climactic events including mega-droughts and wildfires which wiped out pyramid-building civilizations, says a study published in the recent July 2012 edition of Geology. They waited seventy days for her to reappear. Finally she came. For a moment just before sunrise, the bright star […]
The 19-month conflict in Syria goes from bad to worse – and there are environmental impacts for the region too “The situation is bad and getting worse,” U.N.-Arab League peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi said today, lamenting the collapse of the truce he helped broker over the Eid al-Adha holiday. A car bomb which exploded near […]
Eole Water from France has developed a water-producing wind turbine and Gulf states are drooling at the jowls to have at least one of their own. The WMS 1000 currently undergoing testing in Dubai following tests in France and Abu Dhabi captures moisture in the air that is then condensed and filtered to standards exceeding […]
Earth’s dust storms and sand storms are becoming more frequent. How does that affect your health? Here in the Middle East, powerful hot winds sometimes drop fine yellowish sand down from the sky, coating the skin and lips irritatingly and making it hard to see across the street. It’s the lashing tail of giant storms […]