Alhough spring dust storms are common in eastern China, 2006 surpassed the average year in the frequency and intensity of storms. On May 7, 2006, yet another dust storm swept across the North China Plain and veiled the Bo Hai from view. One reason the dust storms have been so frequent in 2006 is that drought has settled over northern China. Hebei Province and the Yellow River basin, both south of Beijing in the lower left corner of the image, received little rain between February and early May, according to the Foreign Agricultural Service. Dry soil is easily lifted in the wind, and frequent dust storms have resulted. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this photo-like image of the dust storm on May 7, 2006.