Questions tagged [environment]

For questions about an environment or aspects of it such as geographical, atmospheric or climate.

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4answers
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Size of the volcano that ends the world

One of the theories behind the extinction of the dinosaurs is the eruption of one or a series of volcanoes. Supposedly the ash expelled by these eruptions blocked out the sun, killing plants and thus ...
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Red colored world

It would be useful for a story I'm working on to color the world or various dominant parts of it red. I'm trying to look into the following alternatives, but am open to further suggestions. ...
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6answers
839 views

Man-made mass extinction that benefits arthropods

Context To revive the Carboniferous period of earth one man and a group of other scientists have been genetically engineering and breeding land arthropods into giant sizes and exotic shapes since the ...
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4answers
421 views

Why would an antigravity abyss exist in a deep cavern?

[Here's some writing. It will explain some aspects of the abyss in a way I can't otherwise.] "It's beautiful", uttered Ivan, in a rare moment of appreciation. "Rocks and platforms and chunks of ...
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What would be the consequences of a world that has only one dominant species of non-oceanic animal life?

I have a world that has unexpected lifeforms detected. There are to-be-revealed reasons for it, but the way the ecosystem is set up is: Microbial life is abundant everywhere There is a single ...
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3answers
958 views

What would cause male and female insectoid aliens to become highly dimorphic and live in different environments?

Something I was working on in the past involved a species of sentient insectoids. The idea was the two sexes usually live in two very different environments and rarely come into contact with the other ...
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What would the weather on this continent be like?

I am developing a world on this continent: To know the world, I have to know how the weather works. Inside the white line is the continent. The blue arrows denote the flow of water. Up is north, down ...
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3answers
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If the gravity was half as strong, how would the enviroment change? [closed]

If the gravity was half as strong, how would the enviroment change? Would all the plants grow differently? What change would there be in flying creatures?
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Mass extinction because of too low CO2-lewels

We have all heard what too much CO2 can lead to, but so far the biosphere have never been exposed to too low levels of CO2. But what if it did? And please, this topic has nothing to do with the ...
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307 views

What type of chemical catastrophic event might reduce the bioavailability of iron?

I am imagining a world where an astronomical event occurs, like Earth collides with a comet, and humanity is all but wiped out. In their desperate attempt to recover, humans enter a form of stone age. ...
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What implications might there be of mycelium being self aware?

This is for a novel I'm writing. The basic premise is that massive networks of mycelium running under the soil combine to form a decentralised intelligence that has been managing life and conditions ...
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470 views

Creating a dark world - What kind of flora can I get away with

Primary question If this world averages a visible light level of civil twilight (about 1000x dimmer than full daylight, or 500x brighter than full moonlight) during the day, what kind of plants can I ...
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How can natural chimerism be advantageous to a species?

Genetic chimerism is a condition in which a single organism is composed of cells with more than one distinct genotype. In animals, this means an individual derived from two or more zygotes, which can ...
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Determining climate and biomes in a non-planetary setting

I'm currently playing with a geographical setting that's flat rather than round and thus doesn't follow a lot of the same rules as one modeled as a planet. I've found resources concerning climate in ...
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2answers
296 views

What metals other than calcium can be used to create alien bones that won't also engender a human-toxic environment?

Edit: Okay, truth be known that this question was part of a set of 5 related questions that I was recommended to break up into individual posts (in their original form, the comments had no trouble ...
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Extremely huge dirigible/airplane hybrid feasibility

Hybrid dirigible airplane with an extremely large surface area on the top and bottom. Talking at least 100 km2. It would likely be several modular pieces put together, given its size. It would need ...
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602 views

How can an intelligent race on a methane world achieve basic space travel (e.g. satellites)?

Linked What would the flora on a methane world be like? What would animal life on a methane world look like and how would it evolve? What would the conditions on a methane world be like? How would an ...
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Effects of regular prolonged eclipses on environment

What would be the effect on climate on an Earth-like moon of a gas giant, which experienced regular ("monthly") total solar eclipses (by its gas giant parent) lasting approx. 40 hours. I'm trying to ...
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From Mushrooms To Menshrooms

Alternate question title: From Fungi to a Fun Guy So, I asked a previous question about which non-animal would be the likeliest to evolve sentience. The answer turned out to be fungus, since mycelial ...
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If people were the size of cats, and the land was scaled down accordingly, what would the size of England be?

So imagine people were the size of house cats, and the world's land masses were scaled down accordingly (in volume). In comparison to the original size of the landmass, how big would England be? And ...
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How to protect culturally bald people from sunburn?

What are some ways that people in a culture where head shaving is common practice could protect themselves from sunburn and other natural elements?
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6answers
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Could a red tree exist?

I recently started to wonder what a tree would be like on an alien world, and one thing that popped in mind for these trees was their color. The hosts star and environment would have a effect on said ...
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A Planet Where The Four Seasons Occur Multiple Times In One Year?

Earthlings, I live on a world where most places on my planet has four seasons, just like yours does. We also have one sun and one moon, presumably. It's been not even a year since I came of age (20), ...
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What would it take to slow down fermentation? (Specific: Wine / grape juice)

I am working on a story about a person who was raised on an earth-like planet and later moves to our earth. The planet he is from specializes in fruit juice and alcohol making, in specific, wine. When ...
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Minimum housing standards for Single meal self-sufficiency

In my culture we place a high value on self-sufficiency. This means that according to tradition at least one meal a year must be prepared from ingredients that have been grown at home. This is going ...
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How would an organism drink water on a planet where the water is pH11?

Background: The oceans and waters in my setting have an incredibly strong pH between 11 to 14, this calcifies anything that enters them (not instantly but pretty quickly). I know in nature that some ...
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How can a nation that preys on its neighbors survive in the long term?

There is a veil which separates our reality from a parallel dimension that contains Eldritch abominations. An predatory empire has discovered that they can harness the power of this realm by summoning ...
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Which kinds of food would no longer be available if plants stopped producing pollen?

In my fantasy pre-industrial world pollen production and plant reproduction has been disabled by some sort of curse. The curse has a limited geographical span, but the region affected is very large ...
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519 views

How long would it take for a group of humans to travel across a continent by foot?

Think a Lord of the Rings-esque quest to save their kingdom. This quest would also involve detours, but I can just factor those in later. The continent is around the size of Australia, with a lot of ...
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13answers
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What would our planet look like with unlimited and cheap (i.e. almost free) energy?

Imagine the population of our planet is given free (almost) and unlimited energy. What kind of technologies would go mainstream which are not feasible today due to prohibitively high energy ...
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What natural defenses might an ecosystem evolve against dragons?

In a world in which dragons (as animals, minus magical associations) existed, what natural defense mechanisms might other animals or plants evolve in response? How would a creature as devastating ...
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How would flora behave on a two continent planet?

Note: This question is a follow up to this question, and hence forms part of a bigger complex of questions about geology and biology in this certain scenario. Meta: The planet consists of two ...
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How realistic is the geography of my map?

I was told to post this question separately, so here it is. I need help with the geography and climate of my map. Blue circles are ports Gray circles are cities That one brown circle is a town The ...
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Is a single stable planetary ecosystem even possible? [duplicate]

Think of some famous outside-of-the-solar-system planets from say, Star Wars. Tatooine. Hoth. They all have something in common: No matter where you land, the landscape is pretty much the same: on ...
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Dead bodies on a partially terraformed planet : Would they rot or dry?

The planet in question is Earth-like in size and composition and orbits a Sun-like star. Its atmosphere is less than 5% Oxygen and plants (lichens, some grass and river vegetation) have started ...
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What kind of animal could grow quickly enough and produce enough offspring to replace agriculture as a food source?

In my world, for reasons that are unimportant for now, there can be no agriculture. Because of this, civilization can not depend upon agriculture, as we practice it, for a food supply. A solution for ...
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Ice and sand deserts next to each other

Well, the title is the question. I searched for a similar question but only found one asking about sand deserts and swamps together, so I think this is not duplicated. I have a strange mind and ...
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3answers
753 views

How to craze the surface of a planet?

I want to generate a world with a surface that has the same sort of patterning is seen in the surface of a dried lake bed when the mud cracks, but greatly scaled up. Each individual plate/fragment of ...
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2answers
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Extending the Kola Superdeep Borehole

In an effort to accurately map and predict earthquakes and tectonic plate movements, scientists wish to insert sensors through the earth's crust and into the upper mantle. Through some Excel wizardy, ...
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7answers
682 views

Terraforming for robots

Terraforming would not strictly be the appropriate term for the type of planetary modifications I am asking about. Say humanity develops advanced AI robots, who are then left alone in space (as ...
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7answers
229 views

What reason would a hidden, deep ocean society have to come up to the surface of a post-apocalyptic Earth and claim the land for themselves?

This is strictly Earth based. Would it be possible for a society to develop their own civilization underwater (nothing fantastical like Aquaman or whatever, but more of a grimy, hardscrabble existence ...
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315 views

How would a hollow, layered lattice planet work?

I had the idea to make an artificially constructed planet which is terrestrial, but has the diameter of Jupiter. Instead of being a solid sphere, it would be five spherical layers, with land on the ...
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What would be the overwhelming smell of life in my domed city?

I am writing a YA adventure novel that takes place in a domed city. For my model of the dome, I am using the Mir mine project design: http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2010-11/17/russia-domed-...
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What natural or human-induced disaster could bring to a scenario like in McCarthy's "The Road'?

This post-apocalyptic environment, as narrated in the book, depicts a world where most if not all animal life has been abruptly killed, and similarly most vegetation burned out. After the disaster, ...
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3answers
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If Earth's gravity suddenly became stronger, how would we cope?

If the force of gravity at the Earth's surface suddenly became 2 times stronger, how would the environment and humans cope? I'm guessing a lot of flying creatures would suffer, but what would happen ...
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192 views

Mechanism for high geographical change but not killing everything

Premise: Earth has a magical cataclysm that pulls up new mountains, pushes down parts of landmasses, and generally reshapes Europe enough to make it unrecognizable (to the average person looking at a ...
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314 views

Feasibility of Giant Fungi

I have a temperate rainforest environment within the arctic circle of my planet. What is the feasibility of fungi storing nutrients from dead matter during the daylight hours, then erupting to create ...
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542 views

Living on a Giant Tree - Houses

This is one of a series of questions centered around living on a giant tree. The setting/scenario is described below: In my fantasy world, elves live on a giant tree, very similar in structure to ...
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319 views

Could a permanent storm system circle a planet's equatorial zone?

I'm thinking of using this as a method of separating a planet's technological and cultural evolution, then having a sudden clash as the more advanced one becoming able to cross the storm belt. This ...
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Could the moons of a Gas Giant all be habitable if that planet was in the habitable zone?

I ask this as a basis for a World (in this case Moons) Building I'm doing. I came up with a couple of different problems and some possible solutions to those problems: All of these questions presume ...

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