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Saharan Dust

FWC

State wildlife officials say a Trichodesmium algal bloom has been lingering off the coast of Southwest Florida the past few weeks.

A massive cloud of dust from the Sahara Desert is arriving along the U.S. Gulf Coast this week after traveling across the Atlantic Ocean. The phenomenon happens every year – but the 2020 version is especially large and imposing, experts said.

The dust cloud is "quite large" this year, said Marshall Shepherd, director of the Atmospheric Sciences Program at the University of Georgia, in an interview on NPR's All Things Considered. "I think that's why it's garnering so much attention."

Skies over the Caribbean have become filled with dust, as the thickest Saharan Air Layer (SAL) in over half a century continues to march west from massive dust storms in West Africa.

The haze will begin to fill the skies in parts of the Florida Panhandle Thursday, then spread across the rest of the state through the weekend.

Saharan Dust is on the Way to Florida Next Week

Jun 20, 2020

A large plume of dust from the Sahara Desert is enveloping the tropical North Atlantic and has the potential to reach the Sunshine State next week.