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The Most Devastating Dust Storm Ever

2490 words - 10 pages

The Dust Bowl drought of the 1930s was one of the worst environmental disasters of the Twentieth Century anywhere in the world (Cook). The Dust Bowl killed many crops and made normal life hard, like breathing, eating, and sleeping. Since it destroyed a large part of agriculture production, it contributed towards the Great Depression (Amadeo). In order for us to better understand what the Dust Bowl was like, one must first look at what this natural disaster was, what the effects of it were, and the aftermath of it.
As it is illustrated in an article written by Rachelle Oblack, “One of the worst climatic events in the history of the United States was the “Dust Bowl” drought which devastated the United States central states region known as the Great Plains (Oblack).” It tore through the middle of the United States killing or harming anything in its way. The rest of the country was fortunate to escape the horrible Dust Bowl threat. If it had spread throughout the whole country it would have killed almost all crops, and left the country poverty stricken and starving.
Another reason the Dust Bowl was such a disaster was because it lasted longer than any other natural disaster at the time. In an article titled “About the Dust Bowl” it illustrates that, “For eight years the dust blew on the southern plains. It came in a yellowish-brown haze from the South and in rolling walls of black from the North (About the Dust Bowl).” Its main cause was too many irresponsible farmers who settled during World War I. Many inexperienced people became farmers during World War I mainly because it was a highly profitable job at the time. In Kimberly Amadeo’s article, she states that
The prairies of the Midwest were originally protected by tall prairie grass, that held the topsoil in place during droughts. However, once the prairies were settled, farmers ploughed over the prairie grass. Years of over cultivation meant that there was no longer protection from the elements. Sure enough, in 1930, a drought killed off the crops. High winds blew the remaining topsoil away. The drought lasted for a decade (Amadeo).
Others also believe that the cause of such horrible storms was due to changes in the environment. Little rain, fierce winds, and extreme heat were all to blame for some of the worst storms experienced in the 1930s. An author named Ben Cook says that
It was the combination of drought and poor land use practice that created the environmental disaster. Much of the Plains had been plowed up in the decades before the 1930s as wheat cropping expanded West. Alas, while natural prairie grasses can survive a drought the wheat that was planted could not and, when the precipitation fell, it shriveled and died exposing bare earth to the winds. This was the ultimate cause of the wind erosion and terrible dust storms that hit the Plains in the 1930s (Cook).
Therefore, the ultimate cause of such a climatic event was...

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