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Questions tagged [environment]

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

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15 votes
7 answers
3k views

What would happen if a society dumped radioactive nuclear waste into their oceans?

Assuming a planet with (water) oceans and technology similar to that on (current) earth, but instead of storing the radioactive waste in caves, they just dumped it into the ocean (in strong, heavy ...
user2813274's user avatar
15 votes
6 answers
3k views

Planet with dual core

My premise involves a habitable planet with a dual core: it has two masses similar in composition to Earth's core, which revolve around each other over the course of hundreds of thousands of years. ...
Steve Henrichs's user avatar
15 votes
3 answers
469 views

Planet illuminated by blue-shifted relic radiation

Are there realistic circumstances that a planet would be accelerated (either artificially or naturally) to the speed at which relic radiation becomes so blue-shifted that the planet is illuminated so ...
Anixx's user avatar
  • 5,316
3 votes
0 answers
294 views

Living in a world with no mechanical friction [closed]

What effects would produce living in a world with no mechanical friction, with all surfaces slick and clean?
Anixx's user avatar
  • 5,316
3 votes
2 answers
1k views

How would tectonics behave on a two continent planet?

I am working on constructing a world which is basically (from the northern pole to the southern pole): smallish frozen over ocean huge land mass encompassing the northern hemisphere tremendous ocean ...
dot_Sp0T's user avatar
  • 12.1k
13 votes
2 answers
6k views

What effect would a red sky and/or sun have on plants and animals?

If an Earth-like planet had an older, red sun — or maybe just a reddish sky due to some property of the atmosphere — how would that affect the growth and/or adaptation of plant and animal life on the ...
Omegacron's user avatar
  • 473
9 votes
3 answers
13k views

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 ...
CrazySlayaNinjaBear's user avatar
6 votes
5 answers
964 views

Postapocalyptic, Venus-like planetary atmosphere

This question is about the same postapocalyptic future setting as this one, so you might want to refer to it, if you have any questions… about my question: What species, if any, would survive this ...
Josh Zmijewski's user avatar
38 votes
12 answers
9k views

What is the next dominant species?

If humans didn't exist, what species would populate the earth? Would an animal gain human-like intelligence if humans weren't here? What animal would gain dominance?
CrazySlayaNinjaBear's user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
9k views

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?
CrazySlayaNinjaBear's user avatar
15 votes
1 answer
995 views

What would be required for a completely self sufficient 1 man habitat?

For the sake of this question, let's say that there would be a space mission that would send one man on a 40 year journey that will require him to be in a completely self sufficient habitat for the ...
user avatar
15 votes
3 answers
1k views

What would have to happen in order to force us to live in the ocean?

What kind of a scenario would have to occur in order for human beings to seek survival on the sea floor? It could be man made or natural, ice age or heat apocalypse, sudden disaster or gradual ...
Clean Ogre's user avatar
21 votes
3 answers
26k views

How effective are bomb shelters for nuclear attacks

I was wondering how effective nuclear shelters actually are? If you assume that your house is equipped with a bomb shelter (aka fall-out shelter). The construction of the shelter is not over the top, ...
Hightower's user avatar
  • 361
7 votes
3 answers
659 views

Could "normal" human development lead to a sufficient air pollution to make gas masks mandatory?

I'm starting a story taking place around 2080 AD/CE, and I'm wondering if the key element - global pollution - is plausible. In my storyline, the XXIst century brings no huge technological advances (...
Njoqi's user avatar
  • 73
12 votes
5 answers
4k views

What effect could drop the freezing temperature of water globally to −40 Celsius?

This question comes up from Is there a man-made or natural event that can cause an abrupt climate change within hours/a day? – trying to get KaguraRap a functional answer to an abrupt temperature drop ...
Twelfth's user avatar
  • 24.3k
8 votes
3 answers
311 views

Plausibility of Massive Maelstroms

Maelstroms are ginormous whirlpools. They can exist continuously in an area. They're cool. The question is, how large can they get? As large as an island? Could a maelstrom have a diameter of ...
mechalynx's user avatar
  • 5,823
18 votes
7 answers
3k views

What would push a civilization to terraform a planet considering the complexity of this process?

Terraforming is the process of transforming a celestial body to become habitable by Earth-like life. Even when I try to imagine an advanced civilization, the cost, time and complexity to terraform a ...
Vincent's user avatar
  • 16.8k
9 votes
2 answers
743 views

Resolving Environmental Implications of an Extremely Massive Mountain

I am doing some work within the setting of the Exalted tabletop role-playing game. In broad brush strokes, the defining feature of the world is the five elemental poles: Water (west), Wood (east), Air ...
Brian S's user avatar
  • 255
5 votes
6 answers
658 views

What complications would arise from a world with an internal atmosphere and environment?

For a long, long, long time I have had a concept of a world that exists on the inside of a hallowed-out sphere. The basic construction of the world is like this: It is a large world, at the center ...
Zibbobz's user avatar
  • 4,306
14 votes
3 answers
977 views

What would be the effect on life/civilisations if the length of a year was longer or shorter?

If you want to have a smaller star but you also want to keep your planet in the habitable zone, you need to put the planet closer to the star. This means shorter years. It is also possible to have a ...
Vincent's user avatar
  • 16.8k
21 votes
6 answers
4k views

Is there a man-made or natural event that can cause an abrupt climate change within hours/a day?

Meaning, cause a seemingly normal winter to suddenly take a turn within hours or a day/two into a completely frozen territory? From what I've read, abrupt climate change happens from ocean currents. ...
KaguraRap's user avatar
  • 1,325
3 votes
4 answers
252 views

Night and light in the reign of the lizardmen

So I'm writing a story on a population of lizardmen who have subdued all the human population. Since lizards spend lots of their time soaking in the sun, I'm not sure how should I go for the night-...
user3834459's user avatar
21 votes
5 answers
5k views

Is it possible for complex life to evolve on planets without oxygen?

*By complex life, I mean something more complex than microorganisms. Something closer to what we have on Earth. Similar to this question: Is it possible for life to evolve on planets without water? ...
Vincent's user avatar
  • 16.8k
19 votes
6 answers
3k views

Is it possible for life to evolve on planets without water?

*By life, I mean something more complex than microorganisms. Something closer to what we have on Earth. similar to this question: Is it possible for complex life to evolve on planets without oxygen? ...
Vincent's user avatar
  • 16.8k
10 votes
3 answers
853 views

How would the global environment of a completely urbanized city-planet be affected?

Related: How would a completely urbanized city-planet support its population? How a completely urbanized city-planet be maintained? Why would a completely urbanized city-planet exist? The properties ...
neph's user avatar
  • 3,362
6 votes
4 answers
1k views

How to go from Australia to Europe using correspondences?

I am writing a story where we have our real science-based world, and a parallel world where magic is the more dominant principle. In fact the principle of magic is so dominant, that one cannot travel ...
Monty Wild's user avatar
  • 61.9k
22 votes
2 answers
2k views

What are the Food sources for an underground city?

Let's assume a city exists underground, either in natural caves or synthetic tunnels. Are there any food sources underground, and what kind of population can they support?
droid's user avatar
  • 333
-5 votes
1 answer
575 views

What is the effect of a non-existent economy on the environment of a world [closed]

I would like some ideas on how the environment of a world where an economy (nothing financial and no currency system) did not exist - would be affected, would progress etc etc.
Eujinks's user avatar
  • 127
32 votes
6 answers
8k views

Does living without access to sunlight for extended periods have known physical or psychological effects on humans?

Humans (even programmers :-) ) are used to having some access to natural light, but in a colony in space, on the dark side of a tidally-locked planet, or underground (for example) this won't happen. ...
Monica Cellio's user avatar
44 votes
8 answers
12k views

How extensive could a habitable twilight zone be on a tidally locked planet?

If a planet always faces the same side to the sun, so that it has a permanent night side and a permanent day side, it will have a twilight zone in between the two sides. This will be a band around the ...
trichoplax is on Codidact now's user avatar
33 votes
4 answers
6k views

Less boring classifications of earth-like terrain when making maps

When creating a map for a fantasy world, I typically add broad top-level descriptions for terrain. Mountains here, forests there, a river, a swamp etc. Watch any nature documentary, and each terrain ...
Neil Slater's user avatar
  • 3,348
21 votes
6 answers
2k views

How do I figure out how many people my domed city on a hostile planet can support?

I have a colony of humans on Mars, living in enclosed cities to maintain breathable air. (If they need to leave, they suit up.) Assuming modern-day technology, how do I figure out how many people a ...
Monica Cellio's user avatar
17 votes
2 answers
237 views

Primary environmental concerns of a new coastal settlement

A group of settlers from a mid-renaissance era have setup an initial settlement along a coastline. Materials for shelter exist and fishing serves as the initial food source. What are the primary ...
Maximillian's user avatar
  • 2,782
18 votes
7 answers
2k views

What would be the next technological step for a civilization after it has depleted all resources that allow for conventional technologies?

Imagine a world that reaches the end of its resources in silicon, petrol, coal, metals... everything that allows for conventional technology — even before it has found a way over it (renewable energy ...
Sheraff's user avatar
  • 12.5k
26 votes
8 answers
3k views

How could a generation ship maintain a source of potable water?

A generation spaceship (a spaceship designed for multiple generations of humans to live in) could sail through the galaxy for hundreds of years before finding another planet, let alone a planet with ...
Terri M.'s user avatar
  • 643
45 votes
10 answers
5k views

How would societal development be impacted if humans were not an apex predator?

We are used to a world where humans are basically an apex predator; we don't really need to worry much about becoming some other animal's next meal. If that wasn't the case, and humans had to be wary ...
user's user avatar
  • 29k
21 votes
4 answers
764 views

Can a world sustain constant low-pressure and high-pressure areas?

Would a world be able to sustain a constant low pressure area such that there would be a constant wind from one side to the other? Imagine that on one side of the world is a desert with some rocky ...
Beta Decay's user avatar
  • 2,223
36 votes
4 answers
2k views

How to Survive Mountain Environments With a Tribal Culture?

Assume we have an Earth-like environment. If a tribe with only early medieval technology were to settle in a mountain environment: What resources would be needed to deal with the elevation, cold, ...
Maximillian's user avatar
  • 2,782

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