General Question

Eggie's avatar

What would happen if we didn't have any storms?

Asked by Eggie (5159 points ) March 3rd, 2013

Storms have devastating destructive forces on this planet but they have originated naturally in the earth. What is their purpose and what would happen if there wasn’t any storms at all on earth?

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11 Answers

glacial's avatar

Storms don’t have a purpose. They are the result of a combination of forces (mainly due to heat and friction) acting over water or land. I imagine it might be possible for a planet with an atmosphere to not have storms, given exactly the right conditions (its distance from the sun, speed of rotation, revolution around the sun, etc.), but there will always be storms on Earth.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

Precipitation’s essential, but storms are unnecessary. Storms are caused by many conditions (e.g. an air mass thunderstorm is very different from a squall line), but they’ll always occur due to factors in the atmosphere and on the planet’s surface.

Coloma's avatar

^^^ Right, storms provide water to sustain all life forms on the planet. No rain, no ocean, no lakes, no rivers, no plant life, no animal life, no humam life.
It’s called the trickle down effect. lol

nofurbelowsbatgirl's avatar

I am going to give an answer that is illogical to most, but considering no one has the one true answer if you believe it it most certainly could be true. To date there is no such test which either proves or disproves the “idea of it”, the earth being flat was also just an “idea”. And if “it” turns out different there is no harm in exploring all ideas.

thorninmud's avatar

Kind of depends on what counts as a storm.

If you mean the big, bad “tropical” variety, including hurricanes, these actually affect a pretty small portion of the earth’s land surface. Here’s a map that shows the paths and severity of every tropical storm recorded in the past 150 years. As you can see, these are confined to relatively few coastal areas. The whole continent of South America rarely gets any. Same for Africa.

The areas that do get regularly whacked are certainly changed by them, but not always in bad ways. Some delicate coastal ecosystems can be wiped out by a big storm, but other ecosystems may become more divers. For instance, big storms take down quite a few trees. This creates openings in forests and lets light into areas that may have been shaded for centuries. Opportunities are created for new plant species to colonize these gaps, and animal species will profit from the new accessible food source, etc. This is very different from the clearing that results from a fire or clear-cut logging because it creates little pockets of diversity among the existing old growth.

So if there were none of these big storms, much of the world would be unaffected, but a few coastal areas would have more stable, but less varied ecosystems.

marinelife's avatar

Rain is essential to life.

Thunder and lightning can cause fires which clear out vegetation and make way for new growth.

Snowpacks held in mountains are essential for watering in warm, dry times.

deni's avatar

I don’t know, it’s kind of a weird question…..everything would be the same, except we wouldn’t have storms. They don’t have a “purpose” they just occur as part of nature and weather patterns, etc. We only see them as so terrible because we’re dumbasses that build cities on the edge of the continent or below sea level, what do you expect to happen.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Storms do have a purpose. They mix the air in the atmosphere which helps regulate the temperature. They dump a lot of precipitation that will flush debris from streams and rivers that would otherwise clog them.

Blackberry's avatar

Storms are also how moisture and heat are advected. With no storms that means no moisture, in earths case. And no storms could also mean no friction or heating of the earths surface in general. So we wowouldn’t be alive anyway.

Blackberry's avatar

Stupid smartphones. My computer crashed so I promise I will produce more grammatically correct posts in th future.

mattbrowne's avatar

In Earth’s history storms have been very beneficial for example by distributing life over large distances.

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