Each year, 22,000 tons of dust from the Sahara Desert is carried by air currents to the Amazon Rainforest where it is an important source of phosphorus for tropical plants

NASA Satellite Reveals How Much Saharan Dust Feeds Amazon’s Plants

What connects Earth’s largest, hottest desert to its largest tropical rain forest?

The Sahara Desert is a near-uninterrupted brown band of sand and scrub across the northern third of Africa. The Amazon rain forest is a dense green mass of humid jungle that covers northeast South America. But after strong winds sweep across the Sahara, a tan cloud rises in the air, stretches between the continents, and ties together the desert and the jungle. It’s dust. And lots of it.

For the first time, a NASA satellite has quantified in three dimensions how much dust makes this trans-Atlantic journey. Scientists have not only measured the volume of dust, they have also calculated how much phosphorus – remnant in Saharan sands from part of the dese… Continue Reading (5 minute read)

5 thoughts on “Each year, 22,000 tons of dust from the Sahara Desert is carried by air currents to the Amazon Rainforest where it is an important source of phosphorus for tropical plants”

  1. Fando1234

    *22,000 Tons. Just FYI. I thought 22k pounds seemed very low to have that much impact.

  2. VoodooDollyz

    …and it is feeding the oxygen producing algae and plancton which is food for a lot of sea creatures in the atlantic ocean.

  3. Oxygene13

    I was watching a [video recently](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2hmAeLYMrQg&t=1034s) about this. They were talking about the process of covering the Sahara with solar panels, which would also help absorb heat, cause more rain (cant remember how but the video explained it) and even start rejuvenating the Sahara back to grasslands and such. However the process of doing that would conversely cause the death of the amazon rainforest as all those nutrients would stop flying over there.

    Its an interesting conundrum because of the delicate cause and effect balancing act we have going on all the time.

  4. Tobias---Funke

    And sometimes it lands on my car!

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