When you go deep into a desert, whether it's Iran or Sinai, it has a similar effect of being in a forest. The stark nature of the planet holds you. Deserts may offer less distractions in your peripheral vision but the clouds and sand come to life as you feel yourself expanding within the expanse.
Date pits from 2000 years ago have born viable fruit in Israel.
Death Valley, USA. It's looking pretty hot out there. Climate change is forcing its effects.
Looking for Covid escapism? There is a wonderful place to explore in Jordan in the Dana Biosphere Nature Reserve.
It's like a Roomba for solar panels. Makes solar panel plants up to 40% more efficient by cleaning off dust while everyone sleeps.
Deserts may not look like much, but there is a slow building up of life organic and inorganic in the soil. We need to preserve them from damage.
British economist Milton Friedman once warned that if you put the government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in five years you’d have a shortage of sand. Whether governments or free markets are to blame, it is possible to deplete abundant resources such as Irish rain. Now thanks to global obsessions with concrete icons, fracking […]
Sderot’s dusty streets and woeful aspect come naturally after enduring years of rocket attacks from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. In this Western Negev town in Israel, all bus stops are small bomb shelters. A traffic roundabout represents the town center, with a pizzeria, a stationary store, and some tired-looking clothing shops around it. The young, […]
Some advocates of eco architecture say that for preserving the urban space the higher up you build, the better. But with an astonishing amount of desert landscape all around us, in Asia, in the Middle East, Africa and even in the United States, we’re thinking – let’s showcase the buried homes, the sustainable buildings that have […]
Actors and actresses are starting to arrive in Abu Dhabi to film a segment of Star Wars 7 in the desert, according to sources close to The National – one of the best regarded newspapers in the United Arab Emirates. How does this fare for the local environment?
Ever seen a spider do back flips? If you have arachnophobia, you might not want to, but for everyone else, the spinning Cebrennus rechenbergi desert spider in Morocco is quite a sight.
On a recent trip to Ethiopia, Italian designer Arturo Vittori discovered how collecting water is both dangerous and time-consuming – especially for women and children. He thinks these water-trapping WarkaWater Towers will help.
With its oversized ears and soft brown eyes, the world’s smallest canid is also probably the cutest. But being adorable has turned out to be lethal for the Fennec Fox in Tunisia, where both locals and tourists are loving the species to death.
To many Egyptians, the desert is a hostile place: water is scarce, terror cells hide in its vast expanse, or land mines make crossing them a death trap. But the Desert Breath land art project near Hurghada on the Red Sea coast reminds us that Egypt, despite its many troubles, is a place of extraordinary beauty.
In my last post I described how I had discovered the remains of a defunct development known as the ‘Arabian Canal’ in the desert some 30km outside Dubai. This time I’m featuring one of these remaining waterways which is still, mysteriously, flooded, despite having been abandoned some 4 years ago.
Albeit huge advocates of urban cycling, we have been sensitive to the fact that – mostly because of culture – the practice hasn’t taken off in the Middle East. But a You Tube video from Saudi Arabia challenges all the naysayers.
Star Wars fans lovingly restored Luke Skywalker’s Tatooine home in Tunisia recently, but the former home of young Anakin, who would eventually become Darth Vader, is about to be engulfed by fast-moving desert sand dunes.
Does a vision of rich, creamy, sweet and cheesy dessert with a crunchy topping totally seduce you? Well, it seduces people with a sweet tooth everywhere in the Levant. In Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Egypt, Greece and Turkey, good housewives make knafeh, the most luxurious dairy dessert.
Ask yourself: if you lived in the deep desert, where the sand burns your soles at midday, would you run outside and play soccer? No sane person should. But Dick Sweeney has sent us thought-provoking images of soccer posts in extreme environments that reveal just how much Arabs love their football.
Refrigeration is perhaps one of the greatest inventions of modern man, but it has come at a price. Not only do they require a great deal of energy to stay cool, but they also rely on ozone-depleting chloro-fluorocarbons (CFCs), or freon, though some countries have phased these out. As an increasing number of people walk […]
In Egypt, people often have to line up for hours to fill their cars and trucks with diesel fuel – particularly during summer months when it comes at a premium. Concerned to ease these shortages, as well as pollution and climate change, Egyptian agricultural engineer Wadad Khaireddine is pushing to grow a desert full of […]
Although the Sahara desert used to be a green retreat for giraffes and hippos 5,000 years ago, it is now a giant, sometimes rolling landscape of sand. A lot of sand. In fact, roughly two thirds of Algeria is made up of sand, according to the authors of a study published in the Arabian Journal […]
With the advent of modern agriculture and technology, it is no longer necessary for most people to shoot their dinner. Yet the taste for the sport of tracking and shooting an animal has persisted, and in some countries, hunting is carefully regulated to maintain a sound balance between predator and prey. Working with the local […]
Anyone who loved the 3D Solar Sinter that uses the sun’s energy to turn sand into functional glass objects will love the Sun Cutter. Also designed by Markus Kayser, this homemade laser cutter carves pre-programmed industrial designs into a variety of materials – including cardboard, paper and even thin slabs of plywood – and it […]
When he first began his career as a young biologist, Allan Savory basically ordered the culling of 40,000 elephants. He and other scientists in Zimbabwe observed that former grasslands set aside as national parks were turning to desert and decided, after considerable research, that elephants were responsible. But it didn’t help to kill them. In […]