Arabian Peninsula wet season dust storm distribution: regionalization and trends analysis (1983-2013)

Meshari Alobaidi, Mansour Almazroui, Abdulwahab Mashat, Philip Douglas Jones

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A dust storm climatic regionalization of the Arabian Peninsula (AP) that aims to categorize the region into several cohesive sub-regions is conducted. This approach was carried out by grouping together similar wet season climatological features of dust storm activity (DSA). A common period of 30 years (1983–2013) for 38 meteorological weather stations across the AP was utilized. The mathematical, statistical and subjective methods that are employed in the process of regionalization resulted in dividing the region into three sub-regions. Each of the sub-regions north, northwestern and central, northeast and south, west and coastal shows distinct features of its own. Subsequently, the temporal trend of the representative station (key station) for each sub-region is examined. It is found that only the northeastern part of the region has a significant positive trend over the last 30 years. However, this positive increase in DSA is not associated with an increase in wind speed. This study assists future research in exploring the relationship between large-scale forcing and the AP sub-regional DSA. As well, this could enhance regional DSA forecast and future projections.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1356–1373
JournalInternational Journal of Climatology
Issue number3
Early online date9 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017


  • Arabian Peninsula
  • wet season
  • dust storms
  • regionalization
  • trends analysis

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