Browsing Tag

Chile

Latin America

High and dry

Israel-Hervas-Bengochea

The Atacama Desert in northern Chile is the world’s most arid place, where some areas have never seen rain.

In the mid-1990s, NASA set up an automatic environmental station in the most arid part of the Atacama Desert. Over five years, it recorded a miniscule two millimetres of rain that fell close to midnight. It was so slight that nearby weather stations did not even register it.

Welcome to the driest place on earth. The Atacama Desert, located in the north of Chile, is so arid that some adults here might never have seen rain. It covers 965 kilometres (600 miles) from Bolivia’s southern border, west of the Andes Mountains, and down towards central Chile. Some riverbeds have been dry for 120,000 years. The annual rainfall here is about 0,004 inches. That translates as four inches of rain per thousandth year. Continue Reading…