According to an article at, the threat resulting from effects of a very large solar storm would be devastating, and could possibly have a huge impact on the population of Earth for many years afterward.

A massive solar storm hasn’t hit the Earth since the mid-19th century, but scientists are quite concerned over the possibility of another. “Solar storm” is the term used to describe a flare or other activity from the sun that sends charged particles, x-rays, and plasma toward the earth which can affect magnetic fields and could possibly disrupt our energy and electrical grid for a long period of time.

The effects of such a storm, if large enough, could prove deadly for a large portion of Earth's population. Networks for medical treatment and supplies, food, water, and of course heating and cooling could be inoperable or inaccessible  for years, changing our way of life.

Thomas Berger, director of the Space Weather Prediction Center at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said, “We’re much more reliant on technology these days that is vulnerable to space weather than we were in the past.". He continued, “If we were hit by an extreme event today, it’d be very difficult to respond.”

See the Gizmodo article for more details and the history of massive solar storms that have hit the Earth in the past.