The Dustbowl occurred during the 1930s because of a combination of man-induced drought and the (mis)use of relatively new farming practices.
In the 1920s, the spread of automotive (and tractor) technologies made it possible to "plow up" the Great Plains. This resulted in the loss of a lot of natural moisture and the creation of drought conditions in lands that had been marginal to begin with regarding the adequacy of the water supply.
Even by the 1930s we still had not learned our lesson. There were conservation techniques using the new technologies, but we weren't using them. For example, the tractors would still plow up and down slopes (the "easy" way) making it easy for topsoil to run down hills and into the rivers. More to the point, the newly dry and loosened topsoil would then go into the air and create a "Dust Bowl" when the winds kicked up. There was a real fear that the agricultural Midwest (basically the Plains states) would turn into a desert.
It was only after an additional half a decade of bitter trial and error (and a new generation of better educated farmers) that things changed. By the mid 1930s, it was a relatively new technique called contour farming, which consisted of using motor vehicles to plow horizontally around hills instead of vertically, that saved the day. Also, farmers started planting trees as "windbreaks" in strategic locations.
IMHO, it could happen again, probably in a developing country like China, which is trying to "catch up" to the United States, and has been prone to adopting our bad habits of an earlier era.
Bottom line, the Dust Bowl was (largely) a man-made, not a natural phenomenon. And the operative principle was attributed to Confucius:
"Men are the same everywhere. Only their habits are different."