Vol 5 Life in the Desert ... Introduction ... Cold ocean currents
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Cold ocean currents

Desert landscapes are shaped by the power of wind and water acting over millions of years.
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Like rain shadows, cold ocean currents do not cause deserts, but instead they intensify the other effects which produce arid regions.

Cold ocean currents move from the poles towards the equator along the western coasts of continents and as they cool the ocean they lower the rate of evaporation from the ocean’s surface. Deserts of this type are found in western Africa (Namib Desert) and South America (Atacama desert). Cold ocean currents also dry the southwestern USA and Baja California and northwestern Africa. Fog is quite common in areas of cold ocean currents.