Red sun phenomenon – Why is the sun red today?

The small red ball in the sky over Bath today is part of a rare atmospheric phenomenon.

What would usually be a bright white autumnal sun has turned as dark red as some of the leaves on the trees.

According to the Met Office it is likely because of a combination of two things: dust and warm air from southern Europe and North Africa and the tail end effects of Hurricane Ophelia.

Temperatures are at an unusual 19C to 20C thanks to the unseasonably warm and dusty air from Spain and North Africa.

The most common cause for dust drawn by these winds are tiny particles direct from the Sahara but there’s a more deadly element too, reports the Bristol Post.

Forest fires in Spain and Portugal have also given rise to airborne dust and those could also be contributing to the odd colour of the sun and eerie light in Bath.

Combine that with gale-force winds left over by the hurricane and you’ve got some very odd weather indeed.

Huge forest fires have swept across central Portugal and west central Spain over the weekend, killing at least nine people and filling the sky with ash and smoke.

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