As a natural phenomenon, sandstorms are impossible to eliminate.
In fact, any attempt to prevent sandstorms from occurring is a
violation of the laws of science and nature, according to Qin Dahe,
a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's
Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and director of China's
"Although sandstorms do cause huge losses to humanity, they have
their purpose," he said on the sidelines of the Fifth Session of
10th National Committee of the CPPCC in Beijing, which concluded
Qin explained that sandstorms have been in existence for
millennia, destroying as well as creating. For example, sandstorms
were responsible for the formation of the Loess Plateau that spans
nearly a million square kilometers. The Yellow River runs through
the Loess Plateau, carrying with it plenty of dust downstream to
what we know as the alluvial North China Plain.
"The Loess Plateau is regarded as the cradle of the Chinese
nation. It is therefore unrealistic to tamper with the laws of
nature," Qin remarked.
He also noted that, contrary to popular belief, sandstorms do
more good than harm. They go into the Pacific Ocean from the Asian
Continent, conveying mineral aerosols necessary for precipitating
air in the atmosphere. A large amount of minerals are also
deposited in the ocean with the rains. These minerals feed the
plankton, which feed the shrimp, which feed the fish, which feed
humans. Put simply, it is a well-organized food chain.
"This is not to say that we should forget about the damage that
sandstorms can cause, but we should not attempt to eliminate them
completely. Instead, we should work towards controlling them and
harnessing their power to work for us, not against. The projects of
converting farmland for forestry and the ecology and environment
programs now under way in the western parts of the country are
feasible ways of doing just that."
(China.org.cn March 15, 2007)