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Orange skies return to the Costa del Sol as 'calima' is back

Orange skies return to the Costa del Sol as 'calima' is back

It will be a "moderate" episode, according to Aemet, much milder than the one that occurred in March 2022

Ignacio Lillo

Tuesday, 14 February 2023, 11:42

‘Calima’ is set to return to Malaga and the Costa del Sol from this Wednesday, 15 February, the director of the Aemet weather centre, Jesús Riesco, has confirmed. Calima, or haze, is the Spanish word used when there is Saharan sand or dust suspended in the atmosphere, resulting in orange martian-like skies and red dust colouring pavements and balconies.

"It will be a moderate to weak episode, very typical in southern Spain; in principle it will not be like last year," the meteorologist said. He was referring to the calima of March 2022, which saw the highest concentration of dust since historical records began. Then the orange skies lasted for days with many streets and façades dyed red by the mud-like rain.

This week the skies should clear by the weekend. "The low altitude depression over the Canary Islands eases by the weekend, so Saturday would be the last day,” said Riesco.

Stormy weather returns

Meanwhile the easterly wind that has caused high winds and rough seas in recent days will continue throughout this week. Wednesday and Thursday will be calmer, but the lull is only expected to last until Friday when the winds will pick up again, although far from the strength of last weekend.

Aemet forecasts waves of three to four metres and winds of 50 to 60 km/h.

José Luis Escudero, author of the SUR.es weather blog, agrees with the forecast: “We will have a powerful anticyclone to the north of the peninsula. In anticyclones, the wind circulates clockwise and in storms [it does the opposite. It is due to this large difference in pressure that strong winds occur.”

As well as the coasts of Malaga, Almeria, Granada, the Strait, Ceuta, Melilla and the coast and inland Cadiz will also be affected.

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