Types Of Natural Resources Environmental Sciences Essay

Resource is a general term for substance, energy and information that can be exploited and developed by homo. It is a of course happening substance that widely exists in nature and human society which can convey wealth to humanity. Harmonizing to Elcome ( 1998 ) , natural resources are the natural trade goods and characteristics of the Earth ‘s physical environment that are exploited by the human populations. Natural resources are extracted from the Earth to utilize in their existing signifier and frequently changed in signifier during the fabrication procedure, which turns natural resources into merchandises.The universe is heading for an “ ecological recognition crunch ” far worse than the currentfiscal crisis because worlds are over-using the natural resources of the planet,an international survey warns today.The Living Planet study calculates that worlds are utilizing 30 % moreresources than the Earth can refill each twelvemonth, which is taking to deforestation,degraded dirts, polluted air and H2O, and dramatic diminutions in Numberss of fishand other species.

( Jowit, 2008 )Basically, natural resources are classified into two major classs, which are renewable resources and non-renewable resources. Renewable resources are farther sub-categorized into sustainable and ageless resources, while non-renewable resources are divided into consumable, recoverable and reclaimable resources.Renewable resources are the first major class of the types of natural resources. “ Renewable resources are the resources which regenerate through natural procedures within a sensible clip period. They have the possible to renew every bit long as it is non used up faster than it is replaced ” ( Bagad, 2009 ) . As shown in Diagram 1, renewable resources are sub-distinguished into sustainable and ageless resources. A sustainable resource has a few features which make it of course to be classified as one of the sub-classes of renewable resources. One of its features is the ability to keep its resources for a period of clip because its supply are presently available to be used and believed to prolong for the coming hundred and even thousand of old ages.

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It is besides dependable in a perspective manner as its use barely or does non do any pollution to the environment. In bend, this uncountable and environmentally friendly resource can be utilized efficaciously. Examples of this category resource include dirt, wood, and H2O in aquifers. To better the position towards sustainable resource features, wood is chosen to be illustrated. Forest is formed with 1000s of trees and every individual of them has the capableness to reproduce and regenerate themselves, where need non human to help for growing or bring forth. Forest has big production capacity, long rotary motion clip, and multiply utilizations ( Nine unique characteristics of forest, n. vitamin D ) .

To be qualified holds the place as the 2nd sub-class of the first major class of natural resources, ageless resource has certain characteristics which differ every bit good as portion with sustainable resource. Particularly, ageless resource has unbounded supply of its resource to be repetitively used everlastingly, as compared to that of sustainable. While its dependability to be used and do free-pollution to the environment is the features sharing with sustainable resource. Tidal, air current, moving ridge and solar energy are the illustrations for ageless resource.

Let farther discourse on air current and solar energy for better apprehension of the features for ageless resource. Wind contains enormous sum of energy and it uses sophisticated turbines to change over this energy to electric power. Wind is merely traveling air created as the Sun heats the Earth ‘s surface. Equally long as the Sun is reflecting, the air current remains an space. Though wind merely generated small power in the United States in 2009, “ it is the fastest turning beginning of the new electric power, ” harmonizing to U.

S. Energy Information Administration. For the instance of solar energy, the Sun has produced energy in the signifier of heat and visible radiation since the Earth formed.

This formation of the heat is categorical as solar. Since solar energy is originated from the Sun, it does non convey harmful pollution to environment and its eternity supply decidedly do it has feasibleness and might replacements any other signifier of resources. Ashok ( n.

d. ) stated that in the twenty-first century solar energy is expected to go progressively attractive as an energy beginning because of its unlimited supply and its nonpolluting character, in blunt contrast to the finite dodo fuels coals, crude oil, and natural gas.In add-on to the first major class pointed in above, the non-renewable resources similarly make up the 2nd major class of the types of natural resources. As discussed by Perman, Yue, McGilvray and Common ( 1999 ) , non-renewable resources are formed by geological procedures that normally take 1000000s of old ages, so that they can be viewed as bing in the signifier of fixed stocks of militias which, one time extracted, can non be renewed. Most experts and scientists translate non-renewable resources as non environmental friendly, cause to damaging effects towards life things, lead to instability of the ecosystem.

In fact, non-renewable resources are sub-classified into three signifiers, which comprised of consumable, reclaimable and recoverable resources as illustrated in Diagram 1. The first sub-class of the 2nd class of natural resources is consumable resource and as its name implied, it can be consumed either partly or wholly of its supply. In order to bespeak the measure of this resource that could be undertaken before its depletion occurs and necessitating refilling, aA rate of consumptionA orA capacity has been introduced. Fossil fuels are the best illustration to suit into this sub-class because it is consumable and it has limited resource to be supplied for long term. It is composed of oil, natural gas and coal, these 3 major types and they are all have wide use to anyone in any state, which makes it be the most utile resource among others. Now, with merely about 4.5 per centum of the universe population, the United States histories for a one-fourth of entire dodo fuel usage, the largest per capita ingestion of any state ( Pimental & A ; Patzek, 2006 ) .Whereas, the 2nd sub-class of the 2nd class of natural resources goes to recyclable.

Reclaimable resource has a alone feature, which is it can be reused once more by using some technological progress such as in machinery to reproduce it into either a trade name new merchandise or regenerate it alike original merchandise. This recycling resource is good to society every bit good as can stay its scarce resource, and therefore it is deserving to be recycled. Materials from discarded industrial merchandises are normally being recycled. Holechek, Cole, Fisher and Valdez ( 2000 ) discussed that recycled metals become progressively of import as resources are depleted in the U.S. because metal recycling is cost-efficient, advancement continues to be made in recycling engineering.

Metallic ores are compatible to be an illustration for this sub-class as it is now widely being recycled and modified into different types of merchandises.The 3rd sub-category of non-renewable resources is recoverable resource. Recoverable resources are the sum of resources identified in a modesty that are technologically or economically executable to pull out. Mineral militias and all other sedimentations that may finally go available, either known sedimentations that are non economically or technologically recoverable at present, or unknown sedimentations, rich or thin, that may be inferred to be but have non been recovered yet. Rock, though it is difficult and strong, does non remain that manner everlastingly. When it undergoes the procedure of enduring, little grains and bantam atoms are worn out and sand is formed. One of the illustrations of recoverable resources is sand. Mattern ( 2005 ) mentioned that enduring and eroding are processes that usage natural forces like air current, H2O, and ice to interrupt down and transport stones and other stuff.

It takes 1000s or 1000000s old ages to organize sand, depending on the clime alterations and environmental elements. The most abundant component of sand is silica, normally in the signifier of vitreous silica. There are lands on Earth that are still undiscovered. It is believed that much sand will be discovered in the hereafter.In decision, the types of natural resources are classified into renewable and non-renewable as its two major classs. While each of this major class can be sub-differentiated into several categories, i.e.

sustainable and ageless for renewable and consumable, reclaimable and recoverable for non-renewable. Each of these sub-classes has its unique and specific characteristic which holds it from being categorized into the others.


Diagram 1: Illustration of categorization of natural resources.


DirtForestWater in aquifersRENEWABLE






Metallic ores


SandGravelBeginning: Adapted from Elcome, D. ( 1998 ) .

Naturalresources: Their usage and maltreatment. Cheltenham, England: Stanley Thornes Ltd.


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