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Posts tagged Mali

Airborne Dust Over Niger and Mali

18.0N 9.0E

June 3rd, 2013 Category: Dust Storms, Mountains VIIRSSuomi-NPP

Niger and Mali – June 1st, 2013

A close inspection of this image reveals yellow dust blowing about in the air over Niger (right) and Mali (left). Mostly unaffected by the dust due to their high altitude are the Aïr Mountains. Lying in the midst of the Sahara Desert, with an average altitude between 500 and 900 m (1,600 and 3,000 ft), the mountains form an island of Sahel climate which supports a wide variety of life.

Dust Storm Near Lake Faguibine and Inner Niger Delta, Mali

16.7N 3.9W

May 19th, 2013 Category: Dust Storms, Lakes, Wetlands

Mali – May 19th, 2013

A dust storm in Mali blows a thick,  yellow cloud of sand towards Lake Faguibine (identifiable here as an elongated dark area near the top edge) and the Inner Niger Delta (center left).

Lake Faguibine is a lake in Mali on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert situated 80 km west of Timbuktu and 75 km north of the Niger River to which it is connected by a system of smaller lakes and channels. In years when the height of the annual flood of the river is sufficient, water flows from the river into the lake. Since the Sahel drought of the 1970s and 1980s the lake has been mostly dry. Water has only rarely reached the lake and even when it has done so, the lake has been only partially filled with water. This has caused a partial collapse of the local ecosystem.

The Inner Niger Delta, also known as the Macina, is a large area of lakes and floodplains in the semi-arid Sahel area of central Mali, just south of the Sahara desert. The Niger inland Delta lies in the Sahelian zone, and has an ecosystem that is largely dependent on the amount of flooding it receives. Due to its proximity to the widening Sahel, there have been concerns that the delta may be getting less rain every year. Here, the delta appears quite dry, blending in with the surrounding terrain rather than showing a great deal of green vegetation.

Smoke from Agricultural Fires in West Africa – April 4th, 2013

9.2N 9.1W

April 4th, 2013 Category: Fires, Image of the day

West Africa – April 2nd, 2013

While sun glint highlights rivers along the coast of Guinea and Sierra Leone, fires furthern inland in West Africa create a haze that covers much of the region. Many of the fires have been active since late March, and are clustered in the green lands of Sierra Leone, while others dot the landscape of Guinea and Liberia. A few blazes are present in southwest Mali and Côte d’Ivoire, as well.

While the source of these fires cannot be discerned in the satellite imagery, this pattern at this time of year in this region is typical of agricultural fires. Farmers deliberately set such blazes in order to clear land, bring nutrients into the soil, prepare fields for planting, and renew pastureland. The smoke from the fires, however, create air pollution, which can cause health problems both in humans and livestock both close to, and far from, the source.

Fires in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire – January 2nd, 2013

7.3N 3.2W

January 2nd, 2013 Category: Fires, Image of the day

West Africa – December 31st, 2012

Fires can be seen in West Africa, south of the Niger Inland Delta (top center). Most of the fires are concentrated in the lower right quadrant, in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire, and are releasing plumes of smoke that blow southwestward. In the full image, Lake Volta, in Ghana, is partially visible through the smoke, and fires can also be seen further west, in Guinea.

Inner Niger Delta South of Sahara Desert, Mali

14.6N 5W

November 5th, 2012 Category: Deserts, Rivers

Mali – November 4th, 2012

The bright green area spreading across the otherwise arid, yellow and tan landscape, is the Inner Niger Delta, also known as the Macina. It is a large area of lakes and floodplains in the semi-arid Sahel area of central Mali, just south of the Sahara desert. The delta consists of the middle course of the Niger River, between the bifurcated Niger and its tributary, the Bani, which from here run north towards the desert. Due to its proximity to the widening Sahel, there have been concerns that the Macina may be getting less rain every year.

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