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10 dust storms as seen from space

By: Katherine Butler on Aug. 14, 2012, 6:04 p.m.
Dust cloud over Sea of Japan

Photo: NASA

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Dust cloud over Sea of Japan

This image of the Sea of Japan (East Sea) was taken on March 18, 2002, after a massive dust storm coated much of Beijing with a fine layer of dust. Incredible dust storms have become a yearly event for city residents, who call the arrival of dust from the deserts of Mongolia the “shachenbao or “dust cloud tempest.” These storms are believed to be the result of deforestation. Almost 1 million tons of dust blows across China each year, according to NASA. Here we see the dust as it swirls over this body of water and onto the Pacific.