Information About Kuwait
Environment

Dust Storm (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

A dust storm comes in the form of strong wind that carries with it a set of sand grains and clay that is mostly of a mineral source which stuck in the air at altitudes of up to several hundred meters and a width of tens or hundreds of kilometers. The degree of concentration varies based on the nature and dryness of the source and the direction and speed of wind. The level of concentration may reach the focus to the thousands of particles per cubic centimeter.

Stages of dust storms (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

  • Phase I: lifting soil from the surface of the ground depending on the type of soil, grain size and moisture.
  • Phase II: Transfer in the air depending on the severity and stability of the wind.
  • Phase III: deposition process that can be due to rain water or under the influence of gravity or instability of the atmosphere.

Dust Regional Sources (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

  • Western Sahara of Iraq and Levantine.
  • Iraq’s marshlands and flood plain of the tributaries.
  • The area between the Iranian Zagros Mountains in the east and the Shatt al-Arab and the Tigris River from the west.
  • Dahna Desert and Aldbdbh formation.
  • Global Sources mostly African Sahara.
  • Local sources of dust in Kuwait
  • Cosmic sources or the so-called cosmic dust and this represents a small percentage of the total falling dust.

Local dust sources in Kuwait (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

  • Warba and Boubyan islands what due to their rich content of earth-shattering amounts of silt and sediment silt.
  • Tidal flats in Kuwait Bay, Khor Alsibbiya and scattered bays in Kuwait.
  • Desert silt and sediment and silt in some valleys, especially the North West ones.
  • Coastal and desert marshes.
  • Sand dunes, particularly those located in Alhoimlih domain – Al-Atraf, where they contain 4% of loose sediments of mud, silt and fine sand.
  • Empty spaces and degraded land in addition to the scarcity of vegetation, whether in residential areas or open desert.

The causes of dust storms (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

Natural causes

  • The strongly deepening trough to the east and the high pressure to the west coming from Europe is the reason for the decline in the pressure power which impacts the wind speed which then can carry large amounts of dust into the upper atmosphere by the strong convection currents.
  • The emergence of the climate change phenomenon and the appearance of strong storms not previously known in the region.
  • Extended periods of drought for where rains are scarce.

Human Reasons:

Land degradation in desert areas due to human activities (such as overgrazing – extract of quarry materials – soil compaction by vehicles – camping – timber cutting and decaying vegetation), which makes soil fragile and easily volatile with active and strong winds.

The negative effects of dust storms in the State of Kuwait (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

  • The Environmental Aspect:

– The quantity of precipitated dust as a result of dust transmission by dust waves amounts to 275 tons / km 2 / year, i.e. the equivalent of five million tons of dust on the area of ​​Kuwait every year.

– The very high cost of treatment of fungal infections resulting of dust waves through the spraying of pesticides and rehabilitation of agricultural crops.

– Lost soil fertility as a result of wind erosion of organic matter and nutrient-rich silt granules necessary for plant growth, leading to the deterioration of vegetation.

  • The Health Aspect:

– Increase of the number of patients with asthma and shortness of breath as a result of dust waves up to 2000 patients annually at a rate of 175 patients per day, which cost the government K.D. 30,000/- per year.

  • The Security Aspect

– The number of traffic accidents rise in dusty days up to 275 compared with 92 accidents as a daily average.

  • The Economic Aspect

– Air, sea and land traffic movement is affected by dust waves, which cost the government huge amounts of money.

The positive effects of dust storms (Source: Dr. Ali Al-Dosari member of the National Committee to Combat Desertification representative of Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research)

– Dust is rich in minerals and beneficial elements. It contains more than 2,700 ppm of iron elements, 63% of granulated clay and more than 5% of organic matter and pollen.

– Dust is of the most important sources of nutrition in the seas as the iron element plays a role in sea chemical reactions, while dust is considered as an essential food for microorganisms and plant plankton.

– Dust content of pollen informed us of how far can dust from regional and local sources travel.

– Dust content of pollen is used to estimate a numerical value for the extent of degradation of vegetation in the region. The amount of pollen decreased by one-third between 2010 and 2011.

Land Uses: (Source: The National Committee to Combat Desertification)

Approximate areas of degraded and non-degraded plots in a number of land uses wild environment in Kuwait, as estimated by a number of specialist members of the National Committee to Combat Desertification

  • Agriculture land area of ​​470 km2, which constitutes 2.6 percent of the area of ​​the State of Kuwait.
  • Area of filled gravel quarries of ​​383 km2 accounting for 2.1% of the area of ​​the State of Kuwait.
  • Reserves, with an area 3242 km2 accounting for 18% of the area of ​​the State of Kuwait.
  • Oil fields area of ​​1177 km 2 accounting for 6.6% of the area of ​​the State of Kuwait ratio.
  • Natural pasture area of 9123 km2 accounting for 51% of the area of ​​the State of Kuwait

The Coasts and Desertification Monitoring Directorate represented by the Desertification Department carries out field survey of wild and protected areas where the department staff measure the intensity of soil compaction, soil absorption of water, and vegetation in wild areas compared to its neighboring protected areas.

Due to the proximity of camping season and for maintaining the environment, protecting lands, reduction of land degradation processes, we recommend the application of the Environment Protection Law No. (42) for the year 2014 Article 40 “It is prohibited for wild area visitors for camping or for any other purpose to do any activity that would cause damage to the soil or impact its natural properties or to pollute it in a manner that affects its production capacity. The executive regulations of this law shall state the requirements and standards to be met. “

Camping season

Environment Public Authority represented by the desertification Department of Coasts and Desertification Monitoring Directorate participated in the  second meeting of the Kuwait Municipality Commission to Study and update locations temporarily assigned for spring camping.

Committee members discussed some field problems in the application of the law of camping in some areas allocated for camping.

The PAE staff reassured keeping away from protected areas, coordination with the concerned authorities and compliance with all the camping season special environmental requirements provided that camping sites, and registration procedures be announced for campers.

Because of the approaching advent of camping season, the Environment Public Authority reiterates to campers and wilderness areas visitors to ensure the application of the special environment conditions of the camping season, the protection of terrestrial environment and the application of the provisions of Article No. (40) of the Act : “It is prohibited for wild area visitors for camping or for any other purpose to do any activity that would cause damage to the soil or impact its natural properties or to pollute it in a manner that affects its production capacity. The executive regulations of this law shall state the requirements and standards to be met. “


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