Dallol is a settlement in
Administrative Zone 2
of the Afar
Region in the Afar Depression, it has a latitude and longitude of with an
elevation of 50 meters above sea level.
The Central Statistical
has not published an estimate for this settlement's 2005
population; it has been described as a ghost
Dallol currently holds the record high
average temperature for an inhabited location
on Earth, where
an average annual temperature of 34°C (94°F) was recorded between
the years 1960 and 1966. Dallol is also one of the most remote
places on Earth. There are no roads; the only regular transport
service is provided by camel
travel to the area to collect salt.
the Dallol volcano,
which last exploded in 1926.
A railway from the port of Mersa Fatma in Eritrea to a point
28 km from Dallol was completed in April 1918. Potash
production is said to have reached about
50,000 metric tons after the railway was constructed. Production
was stopped after World War I owing to large-scale supplies from
Germany, USA, and USSR. Unsuccessful attempts to reopen production
were made in the period 1920-1941. Between the years 1925-29 an
Italian company mined 25,000 tons of sylvite
, averaging 70% KCl, which was transported by
rail to Mersa Fatma. "Local History in Ethiopia"
(pdf), The Nordic
Africa Institute website (last accessed 1 May 2008) After the
Second World War
, the British
administration dismantled the railway and removed all traces of
Co. of Asmara sold a few
tons of salt from this site to India in
In the 1960s, the Parsons Company of the USA, a
mining company, conducted a series of geological surveys at Dallol.
By 1965, about 10,000 holes had been drilled at 65 locations.
became more known in the West in 2004 when it was featured in the
Geographic documentary Going
, some buildings still stand in Dallol
(all made of salt blocks).
- Michela Wrong, I didn't do it for you: How the World
betrayed a small African nation (New York: HarperCollins,
2005), pp. 149f