CONCEPTS

What are natural phenomena?

We explain what natural phenomena are, their causes, classification and some examples. Also, what are natural disasters.

  1. What are natural phenomena?

A natural phenomenon is an event of change that occurs in nature , in whose origin the human being has little or nothing to do. This can range from a recurring and daily event, to a fortuitous, surprising or catastrophic event. In the latter case, the term natural disaster can also be used.

Natural phenomena are due to laws, elements and processes that govern the natural world, independent of the human being . However, the latter affects them through their manipulation and adulteration of the environment ( pollution ).

That is why, in a way, the line between completely natural phenomena and phenomena in which the human being has a part of responsibility is not always easy to draw. In addition, natural phenomena can have positive or negative impacts on human life.

  1. Classification of natural phenomena

natural phenomena thunderstorm
Thunderstorms are natural atmospheric phenomena.

Generally, natural phenomena are classified according to the specific scope of nature in which they occur, as follows:

  • Astronomical phenomena . Those that occur in the outer space of the planet , such as star showers and eclipses (either solar eclipses or lunar eclipses ).
  • Atmospheric phenomena . Those that take place in the gas layerthat covers the surface of the planet, either in the layers closest to it (such as the wind) or in the upper layers (such as the ozone layer ).
  • Geological phenomena . Those that have to do with the movement of tectonic plates, volcanic activity and other internal processes of the planet’s surface. An example of this are earthquakes .
  • Hydrological phenomena . Those that relate to water in its different places, facets and paths, from simple rain to ocean tides .
  • Biological phenomena . Also called ecological, are those that concern other species of living beings , excluding humans, whether animals, plants or other. Extinctions, migrations, are possible examples of this.
  1. Examples of natural phenomena

aurora borealis natural phenomena
The aurora borealis is a natural phenomenon that can be observed near the North Pole.

Examples of natural phenomena abound. The rain, the winds, the seasons, the flowering of the plants, the storm seasons, the ocean tides or the meteorites are perfect examples of natural phenomena that occur daily on our planet and that usually go unnoticed.

In other cases, on the other hand, they tend to arouse our interest or our fascination, as in the case of the Northern Lights , or the migrations of mating of the penguins.

  1. Natural disasters

natural phenomena hurricane disasters
Hurricanes can cause human and material losses.

Natural disasters, as we said before, are dramatic natural phenomena that have a violent and negative impact on human life , and can cause human and material losses. Some are more predictable than others and some are easier to resist, but in general they can be very varied in nature.

Some examples of natural disasters are earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, tropical storms, floods or droughts, and meteorite impacts , such as the one that caused the extinction of dinosaurs millions of years ago.

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