Climate Change behind series of sandstorms – KRG's environment committee


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SULAIMANI — The Kurdistan Region's environmental committee has said that climate change, including lack of humidity and green space outside of Iraq, is responsible for the increasing number of dust storms striking Iraq and the Kurdistan Region.

The committee's spokesperson Abdul-Razaq Khaylani said on Thursday (May 26) that the Kurdistan Region cannot prevent dust storms because they come from outside of the region.

Khaylani told the Kurdish Service of Voice of America (VOA) that the dust storms are caused by a lack of humidity and green space in the areas where they come from.

He said that recent dust storms have come from Eastern Jordan, Eastern Syria and North Africa.

He explained that tiny particles of sand in the deserts of the above-mentioned regions could easily be carried away by the wind when there are no humidity or green areas.

He added that while the rate of green space in the Kurdistan Region is between eight to 10 per cent, the KRG aims to increase that rate; however, this would not prevent the dust storms.

This year, Iraq and the Kurdistan Region have been gripped by a series of dust storms, prompting hundreds of people to visit hospitals with breathing difficulties and causing disruptions to flights and schools.

The most recent incident of the sandstorm was earlier this week.

(NRT Digital Media)