The Sahara is the largest hot desert in the world. Located in North Africa, its area is a whopping 3.5 million square miles, which is almost the size of the whole United States! It’s a scorching hot place where very few lifeforms can survive. What few people know, however, is that it hasn’t always been like that.

Every 41,000 years, the Sahara turns into a savannah grassland thanks to the movement of the Earth’s axis. Its next change of landscape is going to happen 15,000 years from now. But there is an idea that can make this process not just faster but different altogether. It’s called the Sahara Sea project…


  • The first concept appeared in 1877 when Scottish entrepreneur Donald Mackenzie proposed to turn the El Djouf basin of the Sahara Desert into an inland sea. 
  • The following year, two French activists, Francois Elie Roudaire and Ferdinand de Lesseps, suggested a similar idea for the Chott el Fejej, another basin in the desert. 
  • It’s interesting that even Jules Verne was fascinated by the idea of creating a sea inside the world’s greatest desert. He wrote two adventure novels in 1877 and 1905 that dwelled on the matter and referred directly to Roudaire and de Lesseps’s plans. 
  • The first of the attempts to return to this issue was made in 1910 by French professor Edmund Etchegoyen. He was sure that an inland sea inside the Sahara would improve the climate in Europe.



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