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Natural Resources Essay

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Introduction

Natural resources and their relevance to human life are a major concern for all people on the planet. It is now important to have knowledge of the need for and value of natural resources, as well as to spread full awareness of the dangers associated with their scarcity. We have provided both long and short natural resources essays for students of Class 1 to 12.

Long and Short Essay on Natural Resources

Long natural resources essay in english.

Natural resources are priceless gifts to us that are necessary for our survival on this planet. Air, water, ground, trees, wood, soil, minerals, petroleum, metals, and sunlight are all examples. These resources cannot be generated or developed by humans; instead, they can be changed in various ways so that we can make better use of them.

Natural Resources are Classified into Two Types:

1. Renewable - Water, air, sunshine, ground, wood, soil, plants, and animals are examples of renewable resources that can be reclaimed and reformed after use. Water, plants, livestock, and fresh air are examples of scarce resources. Without a well-managed mechanism for consuming these renewable resources, we will not be able to bring them back in the future for future generations to use.

2. Non-Renewable - Non-renewable natural resources are those that cannot be duplicated and are only available in finite amounts on the globe. Minerals, Metals, petroleum, and coal are located under the earth's surface. Both of these items are in short supply and are extremely useful and valuable in everyday life.

Other categories of natural resources, in addition to these two, are specified as:

1. Biotic - These are natural resources derived from the global environment and include life-like plants, trees, and animals.

2. Abiotic - These resources include non-living natural resources such as air, water, ground, soil, minerals, and metals.

Both Renewable and Non-Renewable resources are used for various purposes:

Wind energy is produced by the movement of air.

Water is used for drinking and hydroelectric energy production.

Plants and trees provide us with vegetables, fruits, cotton, and wood, which we can use to make paper, furniture, and houses.

Animals provide us with milk, and their skin is used to make soap, shoes, purses, belts, and other products.

Solar energy is generated by the sun, which is used to keep us warm.

Oil is used to power vehicles and generates electricity.

Coins, steel, and jewelry are all made from minerals and metals.

Electricity is generated using coal.

What Causes the Depletion of These Resources?

Over-Population: When the world's population grows at an exponential pace, so does the demand for natural resources.

Urbanization: More cities and towns are springing up to meet the ever-increasing demand for housing and other necessities. Some resources have been exhausted as a result of this.

Industrialization: Several new industries are springing up in both rural and urban areas to create jobs and manufacture consumer goods for everyday use. As a result, our natural resources have been over-exploited.

Deforestation: Deforestation is the degradation of trees on a wide scale. Forest degradation has resulted in a reduction in other natural resources such as soil, water, and wildlife.

Mining and Quarrying: Resources have also been exhausted as a result of unscientific mining and quarrying for the production of minerals and ores.

Overgrazing: Soil erosion is exacerbated by overgrazing by cattle in general, and sheep and goats in particular.

Intensive Agriculture: Excessive use of fertilizers and pesticides, as well as cultivating the same crop year after year, decreases soil fertility and leaves the soil sick.

Insecticides: Insecticides and industrial waste products have depleted biodiversity in the forest, rivers, wetlands, dams, and oceans.

Soil Erosion: Soil erosion is the process of water or wind transporting nutrient-rich topsoil away. This harms both the soil and the plants.

Let us take a look at the Natural Resources Short Essay.

Short Essay on Natural Resources

Natural resources are those that we receive naturally from the Earth. Natural resources include the flora and fauna in our local area, as well as air, water, and sunshine. Natural resources are classified into two groups. They are renewable natural resources, such as solar energy, as well as non-renewable natural resources, such as fossil fuels.

Renewable natural resources do not deplete and are replenished over time, while non-renewable resources deplete as their use increases. Natural resources are a gift to humanity that must be used responsibly and protected for future generations.

Even though the majority of these natural resources are sustainable and plentiful, human activities do misuse some of them. It takes millions of years for all of those non-renewable resources to form. Unauthorized and irresponsible use of these natural resources would lead to a scarcity of these resources in the future.

The key cause of this threat of natural resource extraction can be identified as population growth. When the world's population increases, so does the need for more natural resources. This involves the over-consumption of lands by sacrificing their true natural value to create massive structures, industrialisation, and so on.

The increased use of new technology and requirements has contaminated our natural resources, such as air, water, and soil, by exposing them to more chemically hazardous wastes. Owing to overuse, raw materials derived from fossil fuels, such as petroleum products, are in danger of becoming extinct.

Many of these risks can be avoided if we use our natural resources more wisely and don't take them for granted. Humans should adopt a more sustainable lifestyle to preserve nature's gifts for future generations.

The above material contained an essay on Natural Resources which had a lot of information about the topic. 

It outlined the ways to write an essay, both, long and short. But, writing is all about creative ideas and is considered to be the most loved form of expression. 

Students shall keep exploring more about the art of writing. The best way to do so is by putting their hands on different topics and trying to describe them in different ways. 

Let us get to know more about the essays, their types, formats, and some of the tips that the students shall be using while writing any piece of content.

What is an essay? 

An essay is a kind of writing piece that is usually short and describes the perspective of a writer. It may showcase an argument, tell a story, highlight an issue or simply, describe a topic. They are very personalized and talk about personal opinions and viewpoints. Since writing is a form of expression and a lot of people love to own their thoughts, essay writing is a skill that everyone should possess.

What is the Format to write an Essay? 

It doesn’t follow a very rigid format. However, it consists of three main parts. 

First, the introduction, which talks about an overview of the prompt that you’ve been given. 

Second, the body, which talks in detail or gives a response to the argument which has been stated in the topic.

Third, is the conclusion, which generally contains the ending lines. It can contain a moral, quote or suggestion. 

Students shall note that since writing is a creative process, there’s no need to confine it within some boundaries. You shall write according to the topic and your flow of ideas. However, an important point that you shall keep in mind is that the content of the writing piece should be organized and easy to understand. If there’s a relatability factor to it, the audience would find it appealing and this way, you can connect with more people.

How many Types of Essays are There? 

There are mainly 4 types of essays. However, it depends on the writer, how and what they want to deliver to their audience. 

Narrative Essay

Descriptive Essay

Persuasive Essay

Expository Essay

What are Short Essays? 

Short essays are generally the kind of essays which doesn’t offer too many details about the prompt but surely highlights all the important points linked to it. 

These kinds of essays are considered to be more interesting and easy to read, because of the length of the content.

What are Long Essays?

Long Essays are generally longer than the others as it contains a lot of information. These are considered to be the ones that have all the details. They may be written in an informal way or even a formal way, depending on what the prompt is.

Tips for Writing Essays

Select a captivating title for it. 

Divide the content into small paragraphs so that it looks more organized. 

Make sure that your content grabs the attention of the reader. 

Your words should give a sense of curiosity in the reader’s mind. 

The essay should be well-paced. 

Avoid using jargon and focus more on simple words. 

Focus on the structure of your essay. 

Avoid making grammatical errors. 

Use correct spellings and punctuations. 

Before writing, you may consider making a rough draft so that it becomes easier for you to organize your points later. 

Understand your topic well so that you can provide only relevant information and don't present an unorganized mess. 

Brainstorm your topic, ask yourself questions, research extensively so that before you start, you get a clearer idea of what your content should be like. 

You may use resources and cite research to make it more interesting for the readers.

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FAQs on Natural Resources Essay

1. How can we Conserve/Avoid Water Pollution?

There are two ways to conserve water:

Maintenance of Water Cycle:

In many areas of the world, healthy forests are important for promoting rainfall. As a result, the water cycle would be dependent on tree maintenance and planting.

Swamps, marshes, tanks, and reservoirs must all be closely controlled. Wetland areas, which play an important role in the water cycle, should not be filled with mud and reclaimed as land.

Prevention of Water Pollution:

It is recommended that industrial wastes not be dumped directly into lakes and rivers. If sewage is to be dumped into rivers or streams, it must first be cleaned and filtered.

Oil should not be dumped in the seas by ships or oil tankers.

Cities' organic wastes (sewage) should not be permitted to pollute the water supply. To achieve sewage oxidation, special sewage plants should be built. Finally, sewage-free water can be discharged into rivers and reservoirs.

2. What are Some of the Ways in Which we can Preserve Soil Fertility?

Following are the ways in which we can preserve soil fertility:

It is not advisable to cultivate the same crop year after year. As a consequence, basic elements of a specific kind are depleted in the soil. Different crops should be planted at different times of the year. Crop rotation is a good idea to pursue. It entails rotating between growing a pulse crop or a leguminous crop and some other crop. This is due to the presence of the bacteria rhizobium in the root nodules of leguminous plants, which can fix atmospheric nitrogen.

To substitute what is taken up as nutrients by plants, green manure or synthetic fertilisers should be applied to the soil.

The type of fertiliser to be used for different crops should be addressed with an Agriculture Development Officer or Gram Sevak.

3. How many words long should an essay be? 

An ideal essay should be 400-500 words unless otherwise stated. The words also depend on what you have been asked to write for. Often, the topic is too lengthy and it becomes difficult for you to organise it. While writing, you shall only keep your reader in the mind and then let the ideas flow on a paper.

4. How should an essay be concluded?

The best way to conclude an essay is by presenting your viewpoints or suggestions and ending it with a quote or something similar. However, there is no rule attached to it and students shall rely the most on their creative skills and let the ideas flow as they come.

5. From where can we get to read some of the samples of essays?

Vedantu provides you with a heck of sample essays. You shall simply visit their website or download their mobile app and get access to it. By reading more and more samples, your brain will give you more ideas, and this way your writing skills will improve over time. Remember, the way to write is always reading.

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✍️Essay on Natural Resources: Samples in 100, 150 and 200 Words 

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  • Updated on  
  • Nov 2, 2023

Essay on Natural Resources

Wondering about how the resources provided by our planet Earth are depleting? Well, that’s true. We have come to the stage where we should start working towards saving our planet. We humans have used our resources in a humongous quantity. Therefore, it’s time we start working towards saving our planet for our future generations. Today we will provide you with a few samples of essay on natural resources which will help you write on this topic easily. 

Table of Contents

  • 1 What are Natural Resources?
  • 2 Types of Natural Resources
  • 3 Essay on Natural Resources in 100 Words
  • 4 Essay on Natural Resources in 150 Words
  • 5 Essay on Natural Resources in 200 Words

What are Natural Resources?

Natural Resources are resources which are present in nature independent of human actions. 

These are the resources that are created naturally by the environment, without any help from humans. Soil, stone, sunlight, air, plants, animals, fossil fuels, etc. are all natural resources.

In simple language, natural resources are naturally occurring materials which are useful to humankind. They can also be useful in a variety of ways such as in technological, economic or social contexts. These resources include building, clothing materials, food, water, fertilisers and geothermal energy. Natural resources were traditionally within the purview of the natural sciences.

Also Read: Essay on Save Environment: Samples in 100, 200, 300 Words

Types of Natural Resources

Speaking of the type of natural resources, there are mainly two types of natural resources. These include Renewable and Non-renewable resources. 

Renewable Resources: These are those resources which are endlessly available to humans for several uses. These resources are trees, wind, and water.

Non-Renewable Resources: These resources are available to humans in infinite quantities as they are not renewable and their supply may eventually run out. Minerals and fossil fuels are a few examples.

Also Read: Essay on the Importance of the English Language for Students

Essay on Natural Resources in 100 Words

Natural resources are parts of the natural world that are useful to humans. Renewable resources are those that can be swiftly replenished, these include soil, water, and air., Non-renewable resources are those that need time to recover, such as minerals, oil, natural gas, etc. 

One should note that the survival of all life on Earth depends on natural resources. However, the usage of natural resources in excess use can cause ecosystem disruption. Many nations are taking action these days to protect their natural resources. Natural resources shouldn’t be used for purposes outside our needs. In order to preserve non-renewable resources, we should utilise renewable resources more frequently than non-renewable ones.

Essay on Natural Resources in 150 Words

The organic aspects of nature that contribute to our way of life are known as natural resources. For survival, we rely on natural resources. Natural resources include things like air, water, soil, minerals, crops, etc. Resources like minerals, oil, and other resources are found in non-living organisms and take eons to regenerate. 

The distribution of natural resources is not even. Resources like these are also the primary driver of international trade relations for many nations. However, with time, these natural resources have now been overused by the human mankind beyond their limits. 

However, the unrestricted exploitation of natural resources is a challenge for all nations these days. To control this, a lot of nations are emphasising garbage recycling and employing more renewable resources than non-renewable ones. 

Sustainable development is the use of natural resources for current requirements without wasting them while keeping an eye on the future. It refers to the wise use of natural resources without sacrificing what coming generations will need.

Also Read: Essay on Unity in Diversity in 100 to 200 Words

Essay on Natural Resources in 200 Words

Natural resources are materials found in the environment that humans use to survive.  From the very start, humans have been dependent on these resources. While some of these resources can be restored more rapidly than others, some require more time. Resources like sunlight, water, air, and other renewable resources are readily available and have higher recovery rates than consumption rates.

On the other hand, the formation and processing of non-renewable resources, such as minerals, oil, and natural gas, take a long time. Even the usage rate of these non-renewable resources is higher as compared to the renewable resources. While some natural resources are used immediately, others must first undergo processing.

Even while renewable resources are available in huge quantities, they should also be used responsibly. Both renewable and non-renewable resources require time to be created and processed. Therefore, it is very important for humans to use these resources in a limited quantity and leave some for future generations.

With time, humans are using these resources excessively. With the ever-increasing population, humans have already created a huge impact on the environment. To begin, humans are continuously polluting the air, water and noise. Buildings are being constructed on more land. The land is becoming less valuable in this way. Humans are soon becoming the biggest reason behind depleting natural resources, such as land, water, and air. 

Therefore, we mustn’t undervalue these resources. The moment has come for us to recognise the importance of using these resources sustainably.

Related Articles

Natural Resources are substances which are naturally obtained from nature. Here are the 5 natural resources: Coal, Oil, Natural Gas, Sand, Gems, and Metals.

Renewable resources are natural resources that can be replenished or regenerated at a rate comparable to the rate at which they are consumed or harvested. For example: Solar energy, Wind energy, Biomass, Geothermal energy, etc.

Conserving and saving natural resources is essential for sustainable development and the preservation of the environment. Here are some easy tips to save natural resources: Implementing the 3Rs in daily life; Adopting energy-efficient practices such as using energy-saving appliances; Reducing water wastage by fixing leaks, using water-efficient appliances, and practising mindful water usage in daily activities, etc.

For more information on such interesting topics, visit our essay-writing page and follow Leverage Edu ! 

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Malvika Chawla

Malvika is a content writer cum news freak who comes with a strong background in Journalism and has worked with renowned news websites such as News 9 and The Financial Express to name a few. When not writing, she can be found bringing life to the canvasses by painting on them.

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Natural Resources Essay

Resources are necessary for humans and other organisms to survive. The most fundamental source of all our resources is nature, and these resources are termed natural resources. If we look around, we can list many of them, like water, sunlight, flora and fauna, air etc., and we can't think of a world without these resources. Here are some sample essays on natural resources.

Natural Resources Essay

100 Word Essay On Natural Resources

Every living thing in the world needs resources to thrive, and nature is itself the epicentre of these resources. These gifts from nature make life on earth easy and comfortable. Centuries back, we humans were on the track of development and are still developing. We have found many hidden natural resources through this journey and used them widely. Today the population is many times more than the previous centuries, and our consumption has increased.

It is interesting to note that natural resources are divided into two, namely renewable and non-renewable. Renewable resources, for example, sunlight and wind, get renewed as they are consumed. On the other hand, non-renewable resources, for instance, coal and petroleum, take more time to replenish. So we need to use the resources wisely.

200 Word Essay On Natural Resources

No one can deny that we all depend on the resources around us. We breathe the air around us, plants use sunlight to make their supplements, and animals consume food from the forest. These all show how living organisms are so dependent on natural resources. Most natural resources are found on the earth's surface, and as civilisations grew, they explored the land and discovered resources hidden inside the planet. Since then, we have used many resources like Coal, Gold, Natural gas, uranium etc. And today, we are not using them but are rapidly exploiting them.

Types Of Resources

Some resources are abundantly found on earth, like water and air. These resources can be accessed when needed and are primarily available, called renewable resources. These resources are less likely to be depleted but can be contaminated, making them less favourable to consumption.

Another type of resource, which is available on earth in limited quantities, is termed non-renewable resources. These resources are limited and tend to exhaust over time.

Another resource category is Biotic and Abiotic resources, which means resources from living and non-living elements.

The current resource consumption rate is alarming, and if it is continuous, the world may run out of resources in the coming centuries.

500 Word Essay On Natural Resources

A natural resource is not anything complicated. Simply put, everything taken from the Earth is considered a natural resource. Sunlight, water, coal, natural gas, minerals, and even air play a role. Everything included here is regarded as a natural resource. These resources are necessary for the survival of life on earth. Energy is one of the most important products of resources and we humans extract energy from almost all of the available resources to meet our demands. Solar energy, wind energy, and hydro energy are some of them.

Types Of Natural Resources

While each natural resource has unique classifications and applications, they may be roughly divided into two groups: renewable and nonrenewable.

Renewable | Those natural resources are considered renewable if they can be readily replenished and there is an abundance of them. Sunlight, water, air, soil, biomass, and wood are all examples of such things. However, some of these resources, such as wood and mud, need more time to replenish than others.

Further, they originate from both living and nonliving sources. Renewable resources may be either organic (obtained from living organisms) or inorganic (obtained from nonliving materials).

Nonrenewable | The term "nonrenewable natural resources" refers to resources that cannot be replenished as readily as renewable ones. Not only that, but their regeneration process is prolonged and may take years. Coal, oil, gas, and other similar materials fall under this category.

Moreover, we divided everything into the organic and inorganic classes. Fossil fuel is an example of the nonrenewable organic resources that arise from the decaying remains of formerly living beings. On the other hand, non-living entities like wind, minerals, soil, and land are responsible for forming nonrenewable inorganic resources.

Distribution Of Natural Resources

There is a significant disparity in the world's natural resource distribution. In addition, several minerals and other natural resources may be abundant over the surface. Even though some places get sun, others get hardly any at all. In a similarity, certain areas are abundant in the water while others have plenty of minerals.

Climate and terrain have a pivotal role in determining resource distribution. This asymmetry is the lifeblood of international commerce, serving as the primary connection between nations. Even worse, it has unintended consequences since nations well-endowed with fossil fuels dominate the market and exploit others dependent on them for their energy needs. As a result, affluent countries are expanding their wealth while impoverished nations are sinking further into poverty.

Example Of Natural Resource

Fatu-Hiva rainforest on the Marquesas Islands is an example of an unspoiled natural resource. The forest supplies people with wood, food, water, and shelter for flora and fauna, tribes, and animals. The nutrient cycle between organisms forms food chains and promotes species diversification.

Earth is endowed with abundant natural resources. We can easily conserve them and the world if we utilise them responsibly until we transition entirely to renewable energy sources. Thus, we will use fewer nonrenewable resources. Not to mention, we cannot survive without them, making them quite crucial. In addition, we need to make good use of them and avoid wasting them in any way.

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Conserving Earth

Earth’s natural resources include air, water, soil, minerals, plants, and animals. Conservation is the practice of caring for these resources so all living things can benefit from them now and in the future.

Biology, Ecology, Earth Science, Geography, Geology, Conservation

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Earth ’s natural resources include air , water , soil , minerals , fuels , plants, and animals. Conservation is the practice of caring for these resources so all living things can benefit from them now and in the future. All the things we need to survive , such as food , water, air, and shelter , come from natural resources. Some of these resources, like small plants, can be replaced quickly after they are used. Others, like large trees, take a long time to replace. These are renewable resources . Other resources, such as fossil fuels , cannot be replaced at all. Once they are used up, they are gone f orever . These are nonrenewable resources . People often waste natural resources. Animals are overhunted . Forests are cleared, exposing land to wind and water damage. Fertile soil is exhausted and lost to erosion because of poor farming practices. Fuel supplies are depleted . Water and air are polluted . If resources are carelessly managed, many will be used up. If used wisely and efficiently , however, renewable resources will last much longer. Through conservation, people can reduce waste and manage natural resources wisely. The population of human beings has grown enormously in the past two centuries. Billions of people use up resources quickly as they eat food, build houses, produce goods, and burn fuel for transportation and electricity . The continuation of life as we know it depends on the careful use of natural resources. The need to conserve resources often conflicts with other needs. For some people, a wooded area may be a good place to put a farm. A timber company may want to harvest the area’s trees for construction materials. A business may want to build a factory or shopping mall on the land. All these needs are valid, but sometimes the plants and animals that live in the area are forgotten. The benefits of development need to be weighed against the harm to animals that may be forced to find new habitats , the depletion of resources we may want in the future (such as water or timber), or damage to resources we use today. Development and conservation can coexist in harmony. When we use the environment in ways that ensure we have resources for the future, it is called sustainable development . There are many different resources we need to conserve in order to live sustainably. Forests A forest is a large area covered with trees grouped so their foliage shades the ground. Every continent except Antarctica has forests, from the evergreen -filled boreal forests of the north to mangrove forests in tropical wetlands . Forests are home to more than two-thirds of all known land species . Tropical rainforests are especially rich in biodiversity . Forests provide habitats for animals and plants. They store carbon , helping reduce global warming . They protect soil by reducing runoff . They add nutrients to the soil through leaf litter . They provide people with lumber and firewood. Deforestation is the process of clearing away forests by cutting them down or burning them. People clear forests to use the wood, or to make way for farming or development. Each year, Earth loses about 14.6 million hectares (36 million acres) of forest to deforestation—an area about the size of the U.S. state of New York. Deforestation destroys wildlife habitats and increases soil erosion. It also releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere , contributing to global warming. Deforestation accounts for 15 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Deforestation also harms the people who rely on forests for their survival, hunting and gathering, harvesting forest products, or using the timber for firewood. About half of all the forests on Earth are in the tropics —an area that circles the globe near the Equator . Although tropical forests cover fewer than 6 percent of the world’s land area, they are home to about 80 percent of the world’s documented species. For example, more than 500 different species of trees live in the forests on the small U.S. island of Puerto Rico in the Caribbean Sea. Tropical forests give us many valuable products, including woods like mahogany and teak , rubber , fruits, nuts, and flowers. Many of the medicines we use today come from plants found only in tropical rainforests. These include quinine , a malaria drug; curare , an anesthetic used in surgery; and rosy periwinkle , which is used to treat certain types of cancer . Sustainable forestry practices are critical for ensuring we have these resources well into the future. One of these practices is leaving some trees to die and decay naturally in the forest. This “ deadwood ” builds up soil. Other sustainable forestry methods include using low-impact logging practices, harvesting with natural regeneration in mind, and avoiding certain logging techniques , such as removing all the high-value trees or all the largest trees from a forest. Trees can also be conserved if consumers recycle . People in China and Mexico, for example, reuse much of their wastepaper, including writing paper, wrapping paper, and cardboard. If half the world’s paper were recycled, much of the worldwide demand for new paper would be fulfilled, saving many of Earth’s trees. We can also replace some wood products with alternatives like bamboo , which is actually a type of grass. Soil Soil is vital to food production. We need high-quality soil to grow the crops that we eat and feed to livestock . Soil is also important to plants that grow in the wild. Many other types of conservation efforts, such as plant conservation and animal conservation, depend on soil conservation. Poor farming methods, such as repeatedly planting the same crop in the same place, called monoculture , deplete nutrients in the soil. Soil erosion by water and wind increases when farmers plow up and down hills. One soil conservation method is called contour strip cropping . Several crops, such as corn, wheat, and clover , are planted in alternating strips across a slope or across the path of the prevailing wind . Different crops, with different root systems and leaves, help slow erosion.

Harvesting all the trees from a large area, a practice called clearcutting , increases the chances of losing productive topsoil to wind and water erosion. Selective harvesting —the practice of removing individual trees or small groups of trees—leaves other trees standing to anchor the soil. Biodiversity Biodiversity is the variety of living things that populate Earth. The products and benefits we get from nature rely on biodiversity. We need a rich mixture of living things to provide foods, building materials, and medicines, as well as to maintain a clean and healthy landscape . When a species becomes extinct , it is lost to the world forever. Scientists estimate that the current rate of extinction is 1,000 times the natural rate. Through hunting, pollution , habitat destruction, and contribution to global warming, people are speeding up the loss of biodiversity at an alarming rate. It’s hard to know how many species are going extinct because the total number of species is unknown. Scientists discover thousands of new species every year. For example, after looking at just 19 trees in Panama, scientists found 1,200 different species of beetles—80 percent of them unknown to science at the time. Based on various estimates of the number of species on Earth, we could be losing anywhere from 200 to 100,000 species each year. We need to protect biodiversity to ensure we have plentiful and varied food sources. This is true even if we don’t eat a species threatened with extinction because something we do eat may depend on that species for survival. Some predators are useful for keeping the populations of other animals at manageable levels. The extinction of a major predator might mean there are more herbivores looking for food in people’s gardens and farms. Biodiversity is important for more than just food. For instance, we use between 50,000 to 70,000 plant species for medicines worldwide. The Great Barrier Reef , a coral reef off the coast of northeastern Australia, contributes about $6 billion to the nation’s economy through commercial fishing , tourism , and other recreational activities. If the coral reef dies, many of the fish, shellfish , marine mammals , and plants will die, too. Some governments have established parks and preserves to protect wildlife and their habitats. They are also working to abolish hunting and fishing practices that may cause the extinction of some species. Fossil Fuels Fossil fuels are fuels produced from the remains of ancient plants and animals. They include coal , petroleum (oil), and natural gas . People rely on fossil fuels to power vehicles like cars and airplanes, to produce electricity, and to cook and provide heat. In addition, many of the products we use today are made from petroleum. These include plastics , synthetic rubber, fabrics like nylon , medicines, cosmetics , waxes, cleaning products, medical devices, and even bubblegum.

Fossil fuels formed over millions of years. Once we use them up, we cannot replace them. Fossil fuels are a nonrenewable resource. We need to conserve fossil fuels so we don’t run out. However, there are other good reasons to limit our fossil fuel use. These fuels pollute the air when they are burned. Burning fossil fuels also releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, contributing to global warming. Global warming is changing ecosystems . The oceans are becoming warmer and more acidic , which threatens sea life. Sea levels are rising, posing risks to coastal communities. Many areas are experiencing more droughts , while others suffer from flooding . Scientists are exploring alternatives to fossil fuels. They are trying to produce renewable biofuels to power cars and trucks. They are looking to produce electricity using the sun, wind, water, and geothermal energy — Earth’s natural heat. Everyone can help conserve fossil fuels by using them carefully. Turn off lights and other electronics when you are not using them. Purchase energy-efficient appliances and weatherproof your home. Walk, ride a bike, carpool , and use public transportation whenever possible. Minerals Earth’s supply of raw mineral resources is in danger. Many mineral deposits that have been located and mapped have been depleted. As the ores for minerals like aluminum and iron become harder to find and extract , their prices skyrocket . This makes tools and machinery more expensive to purchase and operate. Many mining methods, such as mountaintop removal mining (MTR) , devastate the environment. They destroy soil, plants, and animal habitats. Many mining methods also pollute water and air, as toxic chemicals leak into the surrounding ecosystem. Conservation efforts in areas like Chile and the Appalachian Mountains in the eastern United States often promote more sustainable mining methods. Less wasteful mining methods and the recycling of materials will help conserve mineral resources. In Japan, for example, car manufacturers recycle many raw materials used in making automobiles. In the United States, nearly one-third of the iron produced comes from recycled automobiles. Electronic devices present a big problem for conservation because technology changes so quickly. For example, consumers typically replace their cell phones every 18 months. Computers, televisions, and mp3 players are other products contributing to “ e-waste .” The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that Americans generated more than three million tons of e-waste in 2007. Electronic products contain minerals as well as petroleum-based plastics. Many of them also contain hazardous materials that can leach out of landfills into the soil and water supply. Many governments are passing laws requiring manufacturers to recycle used electronics. Recycling not only keeps materials out of landfills, but it also reduces the energy used to produce new products. For instance, recycling aluminum saves 90 percent of the energy that would be required to mine new aluminum.

Water Water is a renewable resource. We will not run out of water the way we might run out of fossil fuels. The amount of water on Earth always remains the same. However, most of the planet’s water is unavailable for human use. While more than 70 percent of Earth’s surface is covered by water, only 2.5 percent of it is freshwater . Out of that freshwater, almost 70 percent is permanently frozen in the ice caps covering Antarctica and Greenland. Only about 1 percent of the freshwater on Earth is available for people to use for drinking, bathing, and irrigating crops. People in many regions of the world suffer water shortages . These are caused by depletion of underground water sources known as aquifers , a lack of rainfall due to drought, or pollution of water supplies. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 2.6 billion people lack adequate water sanitation . More than five million people die each year from diseases caused by using polluted water for drinking, cooking, or washing. About one-third of Earth’s population lives in areas that are experiencing water stress . Most of these areas are in developing countries. Polluted water hurts the environment as well as people. For instance, agricultural runoff—the water that runs off of farmland—can contain fertilizers and pesticides . When this water gets into streams , rivers , and oceans, it can harm the organisms that live in or drink from those water sources. People can conserve and protect water supplies in many ways. Individuals can limit water use by fixing leaky faucets, taking shorter showers, planting drought-resistant plants, and buying low-water-use appliances. Governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations can help developing countries build sanitation facilities. Farmers can change some of their practices to reduce polluted runoff. This includes limiting overgrazing , avoiding over-irrigation, and using alternatives to chemical pesticides whenever possible. Conservation Groups Businesses, international organizations , and some governments are involved in conservation efforts. The United Nations (UN) encourages the creation of national parks around the world. The UN also established World Water Day, an event to raise awareness and promote water conservation. Governments enact laws defining how land should be used and which areas should be set aside as parks and wildlife preserves. Governments also enforce laws designed to protect the environment from pollution, such as requiring factories to install pollution-control devices. Finally, governments often provide incentives for conserving resources, using clean technologies, and recycling used goods. Many international organizations are dedicated to conservation. Members support causes such as saving rain forests, protecting threatened animals, and cleaning up the air. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is an alliance of governments and private groups founded in 1948. The IUCN works to protect wildlife and habitats. In 1980, the group proposed a world conservation strategy . Many governments have used the IUCN model to develop their own conservation plans. In addition, the IUCN monitors the status of endangered wildlife, threatened national parks and preserves, and other environments around the world. Zoos and botanical gardens also work to protect wildlife. Many zoos raise and breed endangered animals to increase their populations. They conduct research and help educate the public about endangered species . For instance, the San Diego Zoo in the U.S. state of California runs a variety of research programs on topics ranging from disease control in amphibians to heart-healthy diets for gorillas. Scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, in London, England, work to protect plant life around the world. Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank , for example, works with partners in 54 countries to protect biodiversity through seed collection. Kew researchers are also exploring how DNA technology can help restore damaged habitats. Individuals can do many things to help conserve resources. Turning off lights, repairing leaky faucets, and recycling paper, aluminum cans, glass, and plastic are just a few examples. Riding bikes, walking, carpooling, and using public transportation all help conserve fuel and reduce the amount of pollutants released into the environment. Individuals can plant trees to create homes for birds and squirrels. At grocery stores, people can bring their own reusable bags. And people can carry reusable water bottles and coffee mugs rather than using disposable containers. If each of us would conserve in small ways, the result would be a major conservation effort.

Tree Huggers The Chipko Movement, which is dedicated to saving trees, was started by villagers in Uttar Pradesh, India. Chipko means hold fast or embrace. The villagers flung their arms around trees to keep loggers from cutting them down. The villagers won, and Uttar Pradesh banned the felling of trees in the Himalayan foothills. The movement has since expanded to other parts of India.

Thirsty Food People require about 2 to 4 liters of drinking water each day. However, a day's worth of food requires 2,000 to 5,000 liters of water to produce. It takes more water to produce meat than to produce plant-based foods.

Tiger, Tiger Tigers are dangerous animals, but they have more to fear from us than we have to fear from them. Today there are only about 3,200 tigers living in the wild. Three tiger subspecies the Bali, Caspian, and Javan tigers have gone extinct in the past century. Many organizations are working hard to protect the remaining tigers from illegal hunting and habitat loss.

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Short Essay: Natural Resources

Natural resources are materials or components that can be found within the environment that offer economic and ecological benefits. These resources, which include water, minerals, forests, and fossil fuels, are foundational to human society and the overall health of our planet. Writing a short essay on natural resources involves examining their importance, conservation, and the challenges they face. This guide will help you craft a focused and informative essay on this critical topic.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Begin your essay with a compelling introduction that outlines the importance of natural resources. You might choose to open with a striking fact, a question, or a brief anecdote that highlights the significance of natural resources in everyday life.

The body of your essay should be organized into clear, focused paragraphs, each addressing specific aspects of natural resources. Here’s a suggested structure:

  • Types and Importance:  Start by categorizing the main types of natural resources (renewable and non-renewable) and discuss their importance. Explain how these resources support life and fuel industries.
  • Current Challenges:  Address the challenges facing natural resources, such as overconsumption, pollution, and habitat destruction. You might choose specific examples like deforestation in the Amazon or water scarcity in the Middle East to illustrate these points.
  • Conservation Efforts:  Explore the strategies and technologies being employed to conserve and sustainably manage natural resources. Discuss global initiatives like the Paris Agreement or local efforts like community-led reforestation projects.
  • Future Perspectives:  Speculate on future trends in resource management, considering advancements in technology, changes in policy, or shifts in public awareness. How might these developments affect the conservation and use of natural resources?

Conclude your essay by summarizing the key points discussed. Reflect on the overarching significance of natural resources and reinforce the call for responsible management and conservation. End with a thought-provoking statement or a call to action that encourages further thought or engagement.

Natural Resources Essay Example #1

Natural resources are an essential part of our world. They are materials or substances that occur in nature and can be used for economic gain. Natural resources are vital for the development of any economy, and they play a significant role in environmental conservation. In this essay, we will discuss the importance of natural resources and how they are managed sustainably. We will examine examples of natural resources, including minerals, fossil fuels, forests, water, and wildlife.

Minerals are one of the most crucial natural resources. They are found in rocks, soil, and other geological formations. The extraction of minerals is critical for the production of a wide range of goods, including electronics, construction materials, and vehicles. Minerals such as iron, copper, and gold are in high demand, and their value has been increasing over the years. However, the extraction of minerals can have significant environmental impacts. Mining activities can lead to soil erosion, water pollution, and habitat destruction. Therefore, it is essential to manage mineral resources sustainably.

Fossil fuels are also significant natural resources. They include coal, oil, and natural gas. Fossil fuels are used to generate electricity, power transportation, and heat buildings. However, the combustion of fossil fuels leads to the emission of greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change. Therefore, there is a need to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and transition to renewable energy sources. Renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind power, are sustainable and have a lower environmental impact.

Forests, water, and wildlife are also essential natural resources. Forests are vital for biodiversity, carbon storage, and climate regulation. They also provide timber, fuelwood, and non-timber forest products. However, deforestation and forest degradation are major environmental issues. Sustainable forest management practices are necessary to ensure the long-term viability of forests. Water is another critical natural resource. It is essential for human survival, agriculture, and industrial activities. However, water scarcity is a global issue, and it is essential to manage water resources sustainably. Finally, wildlife is essential for biodiversity, tourism, and cultural values. However, habitat loss, poaching, and climate change are major threats to wildlife. Sustainable management practices, such as protected areas and wildlife conservation programs, are crucial for preserving wildlife.

In conclusion, natural resources are crucial for economic development and environmental conservation. Minerals, fossil fuels, forests, water, and wildlife are some of the essential natural resources. However, the sustainable management of natural resources is necessary to ensure their long-term viability. It is essential to balance economic development with environmental conservation, and sustainable management practices are crucial for achieving this balance. We must take urgent action to manage natural resources sustainably and ensure a better future for generations to come.

Natural Resources Essay Example #2

Natural resources are a vital aspect of human existence, providing the foundation for our survival and the basis for our economic and social development. These resources refer to materials or substances that occur naturally in the environment and are used by humans for production or consumption. They can be found in various forms, from minerals and water to air and timber. This essay will explore the concept of natural resources, their types, and their significance to human life.

One of the fundamental aspects of natural resources is their definition as materials or substances that occur naturally in the environment. These resources can be used for various purposes, ranging from production to consumption, and provide the basis for human survival. For example, water is essential for human life and is used for drinking, irrigation, and sanitation, among other things. Similarly, minerals such as iron, copper, and gold are used in the production of various commodities, from electronics to construction materials. In addition, soil is used for agriculture, while timber is used for construction and furniture making.

Natural resources can be classified into two main categories: renewable and non-renewable resources. Renewable resources are those that can be replenished or regenerated over time, such as solar energy, wind energy, and timber. These resources are considered sustainable as they can be used without depleting them entirely. On the other hand, non-renewable resources are those that cannot be replenished or regenerated, such as fossil fuels (coal, oil, and gas) and some minerals (gold, silver, and diamonds). These resources are finite and will eventually become depleted, making them unsustainable.

The significance of natural resources to human life cannot be overstated, as they provide the foundation for our economic and social development. For example, the extraction and use of natural resources have contributed significantly to economic growth and development in many countries. The use of timber, minerals, and oil has led to the creation of industries and jobs, while the use of water and soil has facilitated agriculture and food production. However, the exploitation of natural resources also has negative consequences, including environmental degradation, pollution, and climate change. Therefore, the sustainable management of natural resources is essential to ensure their preservation and the well-being of future generations.

In conclusion, natural resources are materials or substances that occur naturally in the environment and are used by humans for production or consumption. These resources are essential to human life and provide the foundation for our economic and social development. Natural resources can be renewable or non-renewable, and their exploitation has both positive and negative consequences. Therefore, the sustainable management of natural resources is crucial to ensure their preservation and the well-being of future generations.

Natural Resources Essay Example #3

Natural resources are the foundation of our planet’s environment and the backbone of human society. They are materials that exist in the natural world, including water, air, minerals, forests, and wildlife. These resources are crucial to our survival and economic prosperity. However, overuse and pollution of these resources can have negative environmental and social impacts. In this essay, I will delve into the importance of natural resources, their impact on our lives, and the consequences of their depletion.

Natural resources are the basis of our existence, and they are essential for human survival. One of the most important natural resources is water, without which life on earth would not be possible. Water is used for a wide range of activities, such as drinking, agriculture, and industrial processes. The air we breathe is another crucial resource that we often take for granted. The air we breathe contains oxygen, which is essential for our survival. The earth’s minerals, such as iron, copper, and gold, are also essential resources used in various industries. Forests and wildlife are also vital resources that provide food, shelter, and other necessities to human beings.

Natural resources are essential for economic development, and they are used to create products and services that improve our quality of life. For example, minerals are used in the construction of buildings, roads, and other infrastructure. Fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and gas, are used to generate electricity, power vehicles, and heat homes. These resources have played a significant role in the growth of the global economy. However, the overuse and exploitation of these resources have led to environmental degradation and social inequality.

The overuse and pollution of natural resources can have negative environmental and social impacts. For example, water pollution from industrial and agricultural activities can lead to health problems and the destruction of aquatic ecosystems. Overfishing and deforestation can lead to the extinction of species and the loss of biodiversity. Climate change caused by the burning of fossil fuels is a significant threat to the environment and human society. The depletion of natural resources can also lead to social inequality, as marginalized communities are often the most affected by environmental degradation.

In conclusion, natural resources are essential for our survival and economic development. However, their overuse and depletion can have negative environmental and social impacts. It is crucial that we use these resources sustainably and reduce our reliance on non-renewable resources such as fossil fuels. By protecting and conserving natural resources, we can ensure a healthy planet and a better future for ourselves and future generations.

Final Tips for Effective Writing

  • Use Clear Examples:  Enhance your essay by incorporating specific examples that illustrate larger trends or ideas. This helps ground abstract concepts in real-world scenarios.
  • Be Concise:  Given the short nature of the essay, keep your writing focused and direct. Avoid unnecessary detail that does not support your main points.
  • Incorporate Data:  Data and statistics can provide a strong backbone for your arguments. Use credible sources to back up your claims about the state of natural resources.
  • Proofread:  Ensure clarity and professionalism in your essay by thoroughly proofreading for grammar, punctuation, and style errors.

About Mr. Greg

Mr. Greg is an English teacher from Edinburgh, Scotland, currently based in Hong Kong. He has over 5 years teaching experience and recently completed his PGCE at the University of Essex Online. In 2013, he graduated from Edinburgh Napier University with a BEng(Hons) in Computing, with a focus on social media.

Mr. Greg’s English Cloud was created in 2020 during the pandemic, aiming to provide students and parents with resources to help facilitate their learning at home.

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Essays on Natural Resources

Dive into the essence of our planet's wealth with our comprehensive essays on natural resources. These resources, from the air we breathe to the minerals beneath the earth's surface, are the bedrock of our existence and the foundation of human civilization.

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36.1: Introduction to Natural Resource Economics

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Types of Natural Resources

  • Natural resource economics focuses on the supply, demand, and allocation of the Earth’s natural resources.

learning objectives

  • Analyze natural resource economics and explain the types of natural resources that exist.

Natural Resource Economics

Natural resource economics focuses on the supply, demand, and allocation of the Earth’s natural resources. It’s goal is to gain a better understanding of the role of natural resources in the economy. Learning about the role of natural resources allows for the development of more sustainable methods to manage resources and make sure that they are maintained for future generations.The goal of natural resource economics is to develop an efficient economy that is sustainable in the long-run.

Importance of the Environment : This diagram illustrates how society and the economy are subsets of the environment. It is not possible for societal and economic systems to exist independently from the environment. For this reason, natural resource economics focuses on understanding the role of natural resources in the economy in order to develop a sufficient and sustainable economy that protects natural resources.

Natural resources are derived from the environment. Some of the resources are essential to survival, while others merely satisfy societal wants. Every man-made product in an economy is composed of natural resources to some degree.

There are numerous ways to classify the types of natural resources, they include the source of origin, the state of development, and the renewability of the resources.

In terms of the source of origin, natural resources can be divided into the following types:

  • Biotic: these resources come from living and organic material, such as forests and animals, and include the materials that can be obtained them. Biotic natural resources also include fossil fuels such as coal and petroleum which are formed from organic matter that has decayed.
  • Abiotic: these resources come from non-living and non-organic material. Examples of these resources include land, fresh water, air, and heavy metals (gold, iron, copper, silver, etc.).

Natural resources can also be categorized based on their stage of development including:

  • Potential resources: these are resources that exist in a region and may be used in the future. For example, if a country has petroleum in sedimentary rocks, it is a potential resource until it is actually drilled out of the rock and put to use.
  • Actual resources: these are resources that have been surveyed, their quantity and quality has been determined, and they are currently being used. The development of actual resources is dependent on technology.
  • Reserve resources: this is the part of an actual resource that can be developed profitably in the future.
  • Stock resources: these are resources that have been surveyed, but cannot be used due a lack of technology. An example of a stock resource is hydrogen.

Natural resources are also classified based on their renewability:

  • Renewable natural resources: these are resources that can be replenished. Examples of renewable resources include sunlight, air, and wind. They are available continuously and their quantity is not noticeably affected by human consumption. However, renewable resources do not have a rapid recovery rate and are susceptible to depletion if they are overused.
  • Non-renewable natural resources: these resources form extremely slow and do not naturally form in the environment. A resource is considered to be non-renewable when their rate of consumption exceeds the rate of recovery. Examples of non-renewable natural resources are minerals and fossil fuels.

There is constant worldwide debate regarding the allocation of natural resources. The discussions are centered around the issues of increased scarcity (resource depletion) and the exportation of natural resources as a basis for many economies (especially developed nations). The vast majority of natural resources are exhaustible which means they are available in a limited quantity and can be used up if they are not managed correctly. Natural resource economics aims to study resources in order to prevent depletion.

Natural resource utilization is regulated through the use of taxes and permits. The government and individual states determine how resources must be used and they monitor the availability and status of the resources. An example of natural resource protection is the Clean Air Act. The act was designed in 1963 to control air pollution on a national level. Regulations were established to protect the public from airborne contaminants that are hazardous to human health. The act has been revised over the years to continue to protect the quality of the air and health of the public in the United States.

alternative-energies.jpg

Wind : Wind is an example of a renewable natural resource. It occurs naturally in the environment and has the ability to replenish itself. It has also been used as a form of energy development through wind turbines.

Basic Economics of Natural Resources

Natural resource economics focuses on the supply, demand, and allocation of the Earth’s natural resources to create a more efficient economy.

  • Explain basic natural resource economics

Natural resource economics focuses on the supply, demand, and allocation of the Earth’s natural resources. The main objective of natural resource economics is to gain a better understanding of the role of natural resources in the economy. By studying natural resources, economists learn how to develop more sustainable methods of managing resources to ensure that they are maintained for future generations. Economists study how economic and natural systems interact in order to develop an efficient economy.

As a field of academic research, natural resource economics addresses the connections and interdependence between human economies and natural ecosystems. The focus is how to operate an economy within the ecological constraints of the earth’s natural resources.

Natural Resource Economics : This diagram illustrates that society and the economy are subsets of the environment. It is not possible for social and economic systems to exist independently from the environment. Natural resource economics focuses on the demand, supply, and allocation of natural resources to increase sustainability.

Areas of Study

Economists study the commercial and recreational use and exploitation of resources. Traditionally, natural resource economics focused on fishery, forestry, and mineral models. However, in recent years many more topics have become increasingly important, including air, water, and the global climate. Natural resource economics is studied on an academic level, and the findings are used to shape and direct policy-making for environmental issues.

Examples of areas of study in natural resource economics include:

  • welfare theory
  • pollution control
  • resource exhaustibility
  • environmental management
  • resource extraction
  • non-market valuation
  • environmental policy

Additionally, research topics of natural resource economists can include topics such as the environmental impacts of agriculture, transportation and urbanization, land use in poor and industrialized countries, international trade and the environment, and climate change.

Impact of Natural Resource Economics

The findings of natural resource economists are used by governments and organizations to better understand how to efficiently use and sustain natural resources. The findings are used to gain insight into the following environmental areas:

  • Extraction: the process of withdrawing resources from nature. Extractive industries are a basis for the primary sector of the economy. The extraction of natural resources substantially increases a country’s wealth. Economists study extraction rates to make sure that resources are not depleted. Also, if resources are extracted too quickly, the sudden inflow of money can cause inflation. Economists seek to maintain a sense of balance within extraction industries.
  • Depletion: the using up of natural resources, which is considered to be a global sustainable development issue. Many governments and organizations have become increasingly involved in preserving natural resources. Economists provide data to determine how to balance the needs of societies now and preserve resources for the future.
  • Protection: the preservation of natural resources for the future. The findings of economists help governments and organization develop measures of protection to sustain natural resources. Protection policies state the necessary actions internationally, nationally, and individually that must take place to control natural resource depletion that is a result of human activity.
  • Management: the use of natural resources taking into account economic, environmental, and social concerns. This process deals with managing natural resources such as land, water, soil, plants, and animals. Particular focus is placed on how the preservation of natural resources impacts the quality of life now and for future generations.

Externalities and Impacts on Resource Allocation

Production and use of resources can have a positive or negative effect on the allocation of the natural resources.

  • Examine externalities and how they the impact resource allocation of natural resources.

Resource Allocation

Resource allocation is division of goods for the use of production within the economy. The needs and wants of society as well as industries impact what is produced. Suppliers focus on producing the varieties of goods and services that will yield the greatest satisfaction to consumers. In the long run, externalities directly impact resource allocation. It must be determined whether the production, as well as the process of production, creates more benefits that costs for the producers, consumers, and society as a whole.

Externalities

An externality is a cost or benefit that affects a party who did not choose to incur the cost or benefit. In regards to natural resources, production and use of resources can have a positive or negative effect on the allocation of the resources.

External Costs

A negative externality, also called the external cost, imposes a negative effect on a third party to an economic transaction. Many negative externalities impact natural resources negatively because of the environmental consequences of production and use. For example, air pollution from factories and vehicles can cause damage to crops. Likewise, water pollution has a negative impact of plants and animals.

diesel-smoke.jpg

Negative externality : Air pollution from vehicles is an example of a negative externality. It affects other than those who drive the vehicle and those who sell the gas.

In the case of negative externalities, the marginal private cost of consuming a good is less than the marginal social or public cost. The marginal social benefit should equal the marginal social cost (i.e. production should only be increased when the marginal social benefit exceeds the marginal social cost). When external costs are present, the use of natural resources is inefficient because the social benefit is less than the social cost. In other words, society and the natural resources involved would have been better off if the natural resources had not been used at all.

Developed countries use more natural resources and must enact sustainable development plan for the use of resources. Human needs must be met, but the environment and natural resources must be preserved. Examples of resource depletion include mining, petroleum extraction, fishing, forestry, and agriculture.

External Benefits

Positive externalities, also referred to as external benefits, impose a positive effect on a third party. An example of a positive externality is when crops are pollinated by bees from a neighboring bee farm. In order to achieve the socially optimal equilibrium, the marginal social benefit should equal the marginal social cost (i.e. production should be increased as long as the marginal social benefit exceeds the marginal social cost). Assuming that natural resources are used and also sustained, the external benefits of goods produced by natural resources impacts the majority of the public in a positive way.

  • Every man-made product in an economy is composed of natural resources to some degree.
  • Natural resources can be classified as potential, actual, reserve, or stock resources based on their stage of development.
  • Natural resources are either renewable or non-renewable depending on whether or not they replenish naturally.
  • Natural resource utilization is regulated through the use of taxes and permits. The government and individual states determine how resources must be used and they monitor the availability and status of the resources.
  • As a field of academic research, natural resource economics addresses the connections and interdependence between human economies and natural ecosystems.
  • By studying natural resources, economists learn how to develop more sustainable methods of managing resources to ensure that they are maintained for future generations.
  • Natural resource economics is studied on an academic level, and the findings are used to shape and direct policy-making for environmental issues. These issues include resource extraction, depletion, protection, and management.
  • Natural resource economics findings impact policies for environmental work including issues such as extraction, depletion, protection, and management.
  • An externality is a cost or benefit that affects a party who did not choose to incur the cost or benefit.
  • A negative externality, also called the external cost, imposes a negative effect on a third party.
  • When external costs are present, the market equilibrium use of natural resources is inefficient because the social benefit is less than the social cost. In other words, society would have been better off if fewer natural resources had been used.
  • Positive externalities, also referred to as external benefits, imposes a positive effect on a third party.
  • Assuming that natural resources are used and also sustained, the external benefits of goods produced by natural resources impacts the majority of the public in a positive way.
  • natural resource : Any source of wealth that occurs naturally, especially minerals, fossil fuels, timber, etc.
  • Renewable : Sustainable; able to be regrown or renewed; having an ongoing or continuous source of supply; not finite.
  • depletion : The consumption of a resource faster than it can be replenished.
  • sustainable : Able to be sustained for an indefinite period without damaging the environment, or without depleting a resource.
  • externality : An impact, positive or negative, on any party not involved in a given economic transaction or act.

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The Sustainable Use of Natural Resources: The Governance Challenge

Still Only One Earth: Lessons from 50 years of UN sustainable development policy

Over-exploitation of natural resources harms the health of ecosystems and the wellbeing of people. In the face of environmental crises and growing inequality, we need to act, including developing extended producer responsibility and supply chain legislation, guaranteeing green public procurement, supporting technical innovation to enhance resource circularity, and adopting decision-making processes that include and respect women, Indigenous Peoples, and local communities. ( Download PDF ) ( See all policy briefs ) ( Subscribe to ENB )

Natural resources are central to human wellbeing. We cannot live without the clean air we breathe, the plants we eat, or the water we drink. We need natural resources to put roofs over our heads and heat our homes. We need them to survive and to thrive.

The concept of natural resources refers to naturally occurring living and non-living elements of the Earth system, including plants, fish, and fungi, but also water, soil, and minerals. A prominent way to think about natural resources is to look at them in terms of depletion risk: do they regenerate, and, if so, at what pace? Some resources, such as trees and plants, are renewable because they regenerate relatively quickly. Others, such as copper and oil, take much longer to form and are considered non-renewable. Together, natural resources make up a dense web of interdependence, forming ecosystems that also include humans. As such, the distribution of resources shapes the face of our planet and the local distinctiveness of our environments. People have formed different types of cultural, spiritual, and subsistence-based relationships with the natural environment, adopting value-systems that go beyond economic framings.

Nature makes human development possible but our relentless demand for the earth’s resources is accelerating extinction rates and devastating the world’s ecosystems. Joyce Msuya , Deputy Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme

The use of natural resources has long been considered an element of both human rights and economic development, leading the United Nations, amid its work on advancing decolonization in the 1960s, to declare that “[t]he right of peoples and nations to permanent sovereignty over their natural wealth and resources must be exercised in the interest of their national development and of the well-being of the people of the State concerned” ( UN General Assembly Resolution 1803 (XVII) ).

Natural resources are often viewed as key assets driving development and wealth creation. Over time and with progressive industrialization, resource use increased. In some cases, exploitation levels came to exceed resources’ natural regeneration rates. Such overexploitation ultimately threatens the livelihoods and wellbeing of people who depend on these resources, and jeopardizes the health of ecosystems. This risk of resource depletion, notably manifesting in the form of fishery collapses, demonstrates the need to regulate natural resource use to better preserve resources and their ecosystems. The very first UN conference on environmental issues, the 1972 UN Conference on the Human Environment held in Stockholm, Sweden, adopted fundamental principles in this regard.

Stockholm Declaration

  • Principle 2: “The natural resources of the earth, including the air, water, land, flora and fauna and especially representative samples of natural ecosystems, must be safeguarded for the benefit of present and future generations through careful planning or management, as appropriate.”
  • Principle 3: “The capacity of the earth to produce vital renewable resources must be maintained and, wherever practicable, restored or improved.”
  • Principle 5: “The non-renewable resources of the earth must be employed in such a way as to guard against the danger of their future exhaustion and to ensure that benefits from such employment are shared by all mankind.”

The Stockholm Declaration not only addressed resource depletion, but also benefit sharing: the objective to ensure that natural resource use not only benefits the few, but the many, both within and across countries. It also speaks to the principle of inter-generational equity: ensuring that today’s resource use does not compromise the availability of natural resources for future generations. In fact, natural resource use relates to all three dimensions of sustainability: social justice, environmental health, and economic development. The sustainable use of natural resources strives for balance between these dimensions: maintaining the long-term use of resources while maximizing social benefits and minimizing environmental impacts.

Natural Resource Use Has More than Tripled since 1970

Although the 1972 Stockholm Declaration laid out the fundamental principles for sustainable resource governance, the state of play half a century later is sobering. The International Resource Panel (IRP), launched by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), found that the global average of material demand per capita grew from 7.4 tons in 1970 to 12.2 tons in 2017, with significant adverse impacts on the environment, notably increased greenhouse gas emissions.

The IRP also showed that “the use of natural resources and the related benefits and environmental impacts are unevenly distributed across countries and regions” (IRP, 2019, p. 27). For one, the per capita material footprint in high-income countries is thirteen times more than in low-income countries: 27 tons and 2 tons per capita, respectively. As WWF notes , “If everyone lived like an average resident of the USA, a total of four Earths would be required to regenerate humanity’s annual demand on nature.” What’s more, since they generally rely on resource extraction in other countries, high income countries outsource part of the environmental and social impacts of their consumption. At the same time, the IRP has reported that “the value created through these traded materials in the countries of origin is relatively low” (IRP, 2019, p. 65). This imbalance highlights the global discrepancies in the distribution of benefits and negative impacts stemming from resource use, with countries “rich” in valuable resources not always benefitting from their extraction, distribution, and use, yet suffering the most environmental harm.

Human actions threaten more species with global extinction now than ever before. Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services 2019 Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services

Fostering Sustainable Resource Governance

A vast array of norms, institutions, and actors influence decisions on natural resources, which is why we speak of natural resource governance. A plethora of national legislation, intergovernmental agreements, regional organizations, certification mechanisms, corporate codes of conduct, and multi-stakeholder partnerships create a complex web of rules affecting how natural resources are used and benefits thereof are distributed.

Global Material Use Infographic

Since Stockholm, numerous multilateral agreements have developed a range of operational guidelines, targets, and standards. Some intergovernmental frameworks, such as the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) are broad in focus, while others are resource-specific ( Minamata Convention on Mercury ) or relate to a specific geographical area ( Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources ). Industry initiatives and multi-stakeholder partnerships often focus on specific resources or sectors. Examples of such initiatives include the Forest Stewardship Council , the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil , the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative , and the Better Cotton Initiative .

Citizens also have agency over natural resource use: through the representatives we elect to government, our activist engagement, and our consumption and transport choices. For instance, carefully considering food production cycles—what we eat, where and how it is grown, and how it arrives on our plate—can go towards addressing the impact that agricultural expansion has on forests, wetlands, and grassland ecosystems (FAO, 2018; IPBES, 2019). However, this needs to be coupled with systemic change across governance structures.

These mechanisms and institutions are not always complementary; in fact, at times they stand in conflict with one another. Consider, for instance, an energy corporation invoking the Energy Charter Treaty to file arbitration claims against a country’s decision to phase-out coal—a decision taken in accordance with its obligations under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change .

Balancing Rights and Interests over Natural Resources

Determining how people can—and should— access, benefit from, participate in decision-making on, and have responsibility over natural resources has been shaped by concepts such as property and rights . 

On the one hand, property rights divide lands and territories into: private property, where rights are held by individuals or companies; common property, where rights are shared by a community; public property, where rights are held by government; and open access areas, where no specific rights are assigned (Aggrawal & Elbow, 2006). Property rights are closely tied to rights over natural resources, which include the right to use a resource, such as hunting in a forest; or management rights that grant authority to decide on use, for example imposing seasonal hunting restrictions. In terms of governance, different types of ownership and access rights can be held simultaneously by several actors: a wetland can be owned by the state, managed by a local council, and used as fishing grounds by communities. 

The notion of tenure security indicates that an individual’s rights over natural resources and specific lands are recognized and enforceable. These rights are key to avoiding conflict and fostering social security as well as long-term sustainable resource use.

On the other hand, there are individual and collective rights regarding quality of life. The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and Other People Working in Rural Areas ( UNDROP ), for example, stipulates that “[p]easants and other people working in rural areas have the right to have access to and to use in a sustainable manner the natural resources present in their communities that are required to enjoy adequate living conditions” and that they “have the right to participate in the management of these resources” (Article 5). UNDROP highlights the importance of small-scale sustainable practices, and the need to strengthen the protection and recognition of groups who have experienced historical marginalization and violent conflict over resource use. 

Similarly, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples ( UNDRIP ) and International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention 169 ( ILO 169 ) protect the individual and collective rights of Indigenous Peoples. UNDRIP Article 8(2b) stipulates that states shall prevent and provide redress for “any action which has the aim or effect of dispossessing them of their lands, territories or resources.” Both texts also speak to the importance of ensuring the free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC) of Indigenous Peoples in relation to the use of their lands, with UNDRIP Articles 11(2) and 28 underscoring Indigenous Peoples’ right to redress for past FPIC infringements.

There is also the right to a healthy environment, enshrined in regional treaties, including procedural rights on access to information and decision-making processes, as well as the right to clean air, a safe climate, healthy food, safe water, a safe environment for work and play, and healthy ecosystems (UN Human Rights Council, 2019). Ultimately, the effectiveness of these advances in international law depends upon national governments’ readiness to implement them. To date, only 23 countries have ratified ILO 169, and many countries around the world have yet to adopt appropriate legislation to protect the rights enshrined in UNDRIP. To do so, and to protect associated rights under UNDROP and the right to a healthy environment, governments must adopt robust reforms across national policies, laws, programmes, and institutions that prompt shifts in country priorities and ensure the mainstreaming of environmental and social concerns across sectors, focusing especially on empowering marginalized groups. To ensure that decisions across society better address ecological and social wellbeing, prominent actors, including the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, are calling for human rights-based approaches to natural resource governance.

Overall, this constitutes a complex architecture, one that is dynamic in nature, often builds on customary practices, and requires balancing “competing” rights and interests through law and policy. Structures are seldom straightforward: there are often overlapping or even conflicting systems in place, and this influences the sustainability of resource governance.

States play a central role in balancing rights and interests. Regulations addressing the extractive sector determine how a corporation’s exclusive user rights may impact the general population’s right to a safe and healthy environment. Approaches to this balancing act, and the distribution, recognition, and safeguarding of rights, and the implementation of associated responsibilities, vary across states and change over time.

At times, this balance of interests favors more powerful actors. Stemming from historical legacies and trajectories in decision-making, structural inequalities exist across resource access, ownership, and tenure security (Oxfam, 2014). These issues disproportionately impact women , rural communities, and Indigenous Peoples, who are often cast as passive recipients to policy change, as opposed to rights holders and key actors in the sustainable management of natural resources. 

Women have faced historical exclusion from decision-making processes related to land and resources (UN Women, 2020). Due to enduring patriarchal gender norms across the world, they hold less control than men over the lands and resources they traditionally use and rely on for their livelihoods and wellbeing. Based on an analysis of 180 countries, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) found that out of the 164 countries that explicitly recognize women’s rights to own, use, and make decisions regarding land on par with men, only 52 countries guarantee these rights in both law and practice (OECD, 2019). As such, it is important that states ensure that women’s rights over natural resources are realized and protected through appropriate mechanisms. 

Leaders on values based land use

Indigenous Peoples also struggle to have their rights recognized. For instance, in Finland, Sweden, and Canada, legal disputes have arisen over the challenge of balancing between states’ sovereign right to govern and exploit natural resources, and Indigenous Peoples’ rights to self-determination over traditional territories and customary resource use. Globally, conflicts have also emerged over specific policy approaches, such as conservation methods relying on models of strictly protected areas, or the expansion of large infrastructure, such as the installation of hydraulic dams, which contribute to the displacement of Indigenous and rural peoples. 

The expansion of international investment treaties further aggravates existing power differentials. In fostering the commercialization and privatization of land and resources, and by often prioritizing investors’ rights and interests over those held by local peoples, they risk restricting public-interest policies and undermine the public’s access to remedial action (Cotula, 2015, 2016).

The Need for Inclusive Governance 

Activists and practitioners working to safeguard rights linked to natural resources and secure tenure have been lobbying for strengthened empowerment and participation of local groups, arguing that this fosters more sustainable and equitable resource governance. Alliances between women, youth, Indigenous Peoples, and local community groups have emerged, connecting local-to-global efforts, and bringing international attention to injustices. This includes grassroots alliances such as La Vía Campesina , which has lobbied to protect farmers’ and peasants’ rights since the 1990s and was instrumental in the creation and adoption of UNDROP. 

Inclusive decision making is key for sustainable resource governance. Just as gender norms have influenced structures for access and use, they have also shaped our behaviors and the knowledge we acquire, with women holding unique agroecological expertise linked to crop resilience and nutrition (UN Women, 2018). So, unless decision-making processes are gender-responsive and inclusive, they risk overlooking women’s specific needs and roles, and will fail to ensure the inclusion of ecological knowledge important for enabling sustainable practices. 

The same can be said for including Indigenous Peoples and local communities in resource governance. The second edition of the CBD’s Local Biodiversity Outlooks illustrates their significant contributions to the safeguarding and sustainable use of natural resources and biodiversity. Important benefits come with inclusive and community-led governance structures and decision-making processes, which, in addition to protecting and enabling sustainable use of resources, can strengthen community support systems and local economies, as well as revitalize Indigenous and local knowledges and languages.

The Need for Transformative Change

Despite efforts since the 1970s, current trends in natural resource use are unsustainable, with potentially devastating results. The 2019 IPBES Global Assessment Report underscored that transformative change is necessary to protect the resources upon which human life and wellbeing depends. The Report also acknowledges that, by its very nature, transformative change is often opposed by those with interests vested in the status quo. Civil society actors therefore underscore the importance for governments to address vested interests and foster inclusive decision making, along with a re-balancing of priorities with regards to rights and interests in order to ensure ecological integrity and social justice (Allan, et.al., 2019). The Local Biodiversity Outlooks mentioned earlier offer important examples of bottom-up approaches to resource governance that can foster sustainability while also addressing historical inequalities.

Bearing in mind global and local inequalities in the distribution of resource use and benefits, achieving transformative change requires bold governmental action, both domestically and in international fora. We need fundamental shifts in production and consumptions patterns, careful attention to value and supply chains, and the fostering of circular resource use and circular economies. Resource circularity breaks with the linear model of “extract-use-discard” towards a “waste-as-a-resource” model that fosters a reduced need for resource extraction, as well as encourages increased reuse, repair and recycling. These objectives are already enshrined in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development , with governments aiming to achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources by 2030 . While implementation has been too slow (IPBES, 2019), there is increased attention to fostering resource circularity, hand in hand with efforts to promote secure labor standards and reduce environmental impacts of resource exploitation. Most notable in this regard are legislative initiatives that increase producers’ responsibility for the impacts of their products throughout their lifecycle. Placing responsibility for post-use disposal on manufacturers significantly increases the material recovery rate and incentivizes less wasteful product design (OECD, 2016).

Wasteful resource use

To better balance the three dimensions of sustainable resources governance—social justice, environmental health, and economic development—we must rethink our economic, social, political, and technological systems that currently enable damaging production practices and wasteful resource consumption. Other ways of living are possible, from the ways we structure our societies and economies, the relationships we form with each other and with our ecosystems, to ensuring that the priorities of our leaders align with the interests of the many rather than the few. To realize these shifts, governments should develop extended producer responsibilities and supply chain legislation to enhance fairer distribution of benefits and harms stemming from resource use and promote the protection of human rights in ways that ensure ecological wellbeing and social justice. 

Decision making must be inclusive and account for the needs, rights, and knowledges of historically marginalized communities and groups. Governance structures must recognize and support pre-existing sustainable practices at local and regional levels, as well as nourish the emergence of more sustainable patterns of resource use and management. This will require strengthening tenure rights and re-distributing power across all stages of decision-making. 

Works Consulted

Aggarwal, S. & Elbow, K. (2016). The role of property rights in natural resource management, good governance and empowerment of the rural poor. USAID. https://www.land-links.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/USAID_Land_Tenure_Property_Rights_and_NRM_Report.pdf

Allan, J.I., Antonich, B., Bansard, J.S., Luomi, M., & Soubry, B. (2019). Summary of the Chile/Madrid Climate Change Conference: 2-15 December 2019. Earth Negotiations Bulletin , 12(775). https://enb.iisd.org/download/pdf/enb12775e.pdf

Cotula, L. (2015). Land rights and investment treaties. IIED. https://pubs.iied.org/sites/default/files/pdfs/migrate/12578IIED.pdf

Cotula, L. (2016). Rethinking investment treaties to advance human rights. IIED Briefing. https://pubs.iied.org/sites/default/files/pdfs/migrate/17376IIED.pdf

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. (2018). Sustainable food systems: Concept and framework. http://www.fao.org/3/ca2079en/CA2079EN.pdf

Forest Peoples Programme, International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity, Indigenous Women’s Biodiversity Network, Centres of Distinction on Indigenous and Local Knowledge, & Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. (2020). Local biodiversity outlooks 2 . https://www.cbd.int/gbo/gbo5/publication/lbo-2-en.pdf

Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. (2019). Global assessment report on biodiversity and ecosystem services. https://www.ipbes.net/global-assessment

International Resource Panel. (2019). Global resources outlook 2019: Natural resources for the future we want. UN Environment Programme. https://www.resourcepanel.org/reports/global-resources-outlook

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. (2016). Extended producer responsibility: Updated guidance for efficient waste management. https://doi.org/10.1787/9789264256385-en

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. (2019). Social institutions and gender index 2019 global report: Transforming challenges into opportunities. https://doi.org/10.1787/bc56d212-en

Oxfam. (2014). Even it up: Time to end extreme inequality. https://www-cdn.oxfam.org/s3fs-public/file_attachments/cr-even-it-up-extreme-inequality-291014-en.pdf

UN Human Rights Council. (2019). Report by the Special Rapporteur on the issue of human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment. A/HRC/43/53. https://undocs.org/A/HRC/43/53

UN Women (2018). Towards a gender-responsive implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity. https://www.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2018/11/towards-a-gender-responsive-implementation-of-the-convention-on-biological-diversity

UN Women (2020). Realizing women’s rights to land and other productive resources. 2nd ed. https://www.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2020/10/realizing-womens-rights-to-land-and-other-productive-resources-2nd-edition  

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Essay on Natural Resources

Natural resources and its importance for human life is an important issue for people on earth. Now it is necessary to have knowledge about the need and importance of natural resources as well as spread complete awareness by focusing on its hazardous effects due to the unavailability of these resources. We have provided here some essays on natural resources with detailed knowledgeable information. Essays are divided in two categories; long and short essay on natural resources.

Sample Essay on Natural Resources for Students

Essay 1 (400 words).

Natural resources are those precious gifts for us that are much important for living on this earth. These are air, water, land, trees, wood, soil, minerals, petroleum, metals and sunshine. These resources cannot be created or produced by human being but just can be modified in different manner so that we can use it in better way.

Types of Resources:

Natural resources are mainly divided in two types of categories, these are: Renewal Resources and Non Renewal resources

  • Renewal Resources: Renewal resources are those resources which can be regained and reformed after consumption like water, air, sunlight, land, wood, soil, plants and animals. Some are limited in quantity; these are water, plants, animals and fresh air. Without making managed system of consuming these renewal resources we would not be able to get it back in future for the use of our coming generations.
  • Non renewal resources: Natural resources that cannot be reproduced and are available in fixed amount on earth are referred as Non Renewal resources. On the earth, they are found below the land like minerals, metals, petroleum and coal. All these are in limited stock and very useful and important for living life.

Different resources are used for different purposes:

  • Air is used for wind energy.
  • Water is used for drinking and producing hydroelectric energy.
  • Plants and trees give us vegetables, fruits, cotton, wood and by using wood we can make paper, furniture and house too.
  • Animals give us milk and their skin is used for making lather clothes, shoes, purses, belts, etc.
  • Sunlight is used for making us warm and produces solar energy.
  • Oil is used as fuel for transportation and electricity.
  • Minerals and metals are used for making coins, steel, and jewelry.
  • Coal is used to make electricity.

Conclusion:

Natural resources are too much essential for survival on this earth. Without them we cannot imagine our human life. All resources are either directly or indirectly connected with others.

Some resources are produced from other resources for example oxygen and wood are produced by plants and trees; energy can be produced from wind, water and sunlight in different forms. Various secrets of natural resources are still hidden behind the nature and the earth. No one can get the actual source of it. We should follow preservation method for using these resources in such manner that they could always be available for us in future for many centuries coming ahead.

Essay 2 (600 words)

Introduction

Resources obtained from nature are called natural resources and are very essential for survival on earth for human being. Natural resources are air, water, sunlight, forest, land, rock, soil, petroleum, metal and minerals. Land, sunlight, wind and rock have unlimited availability on the earth.

Apart from these resources, other natural resources are divided in two categories:

  • Renewal Resources: Renewal resources are those which can be reproduced and regenerated by the efforts of people and some kind of extra care. These resources are plants, fresh air, water, land and animals.
  • Non Renewal Resources: Non renewal resources are those which are limited in quantity and never be regained either from earth or by human efforts. These resources are petroleum, coal, minerals and metals.

Apart from these two categories of natural resources, other categories are also defined to differentiate Natural Resources:

Biotic and abiotic resources:

  • Biotic resources : These resources are those natural resources which are obtained from global system and have life-like plants, trees and animals.
  • Abiotic resources : These resources are those natural resources which are non living like, air, water, land, soil, minerals and metals.

This whole world or universe depends on natural resources in different manner. A human life cannot be imagined or possible without these resources. Different resources have their individual importance in a human life like we need oxygen in air for taking breath and only trees produce oxygen by taking carbon dioxide from air. Sunlight gives us heat that is must for our daily requirements.

Plants require land, soil and water to grow and changes in form of fruitful trees. Tree gives us fresh air, fruits, vegetables, wood, etc. By using wood we make paper and different types of furniture. Water is most essential resource after oxygen for human being. Water animals like fish is used to fulfil starvation of many people and other big water animals.

Other natural resources like petroleum, minerals, coal, etc are used for different types of purposes. Different types of energy can be produced by different resources like solar energy can be produced by sun light, hydro electric energy is produced by using water, wind energy is produced by wind, electricity is produced by coal and water is boiled by burning coal to produce electricity.

Minerals and metals are found deep under the ground and used to make coins, gold, steel and many other things that are needed for our daily routine life. Petroleum, the essential resource given by nature is refined and converted into fuel for transportation.

Availability of Natural resources:

Some of these resources are available on the earth since ancient time even from starting of the civilization like air, water, sunlight, land, plants and animals. Rest resources like metals, minerals, coal and petroleum are found due to the efforts of human after civilization. Different types of energy, wood, cotton cloths, leather materials and expensive ornaments were developed using technologies by human as per the need.

Some non renewal resources are very limited and rarely found on this earth like petroleum and metals, some specific places are reserved on earth from where these resources are obtained. In India, around hundred types of minerals are produced at different places which are very important for financial profits at national level, as we export these minerals to other countries and import some other minerals which are not found in India. In case of petroleum, each country has its different percentage of production of petroleum and do import or export of petroleum according to their consumption need.

Effects of destroying natural resources:

Resources that are found in a natural form and are not produced by human being are natural resources. Use and consumption of these resources matters a lot for future of human life. In current situation forest are left in very few quantities because of the increased population (people cut trees to get wood, paper and land for making building over there).

Animals are also killed for the personal need of human-like enjoying food and making leather goods from skin of different animals. If we still do not understand the importance of forests and animals, result will be hazardous for all. Without fresh air and water, human life will be impossible in future. Thus, to avoid this critical situation, we need to grow plants and limit our consumption of resources like water, electricity, oil, etc.

Related Information:

10 Lines on Natural Resources

More Information:

10 Lines on Conservation of Natural Resources

10 Lines on Natural Resource Depletion

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Essay on Natural Resources for Children and Students

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Natural resources are commonly referred to the resources that are a gift of nature. They are produced naturally without the intervention of human beings. Sunlight, water, soil and air are some of the examples of natural resources. These are available in abundance in nature. However, there are various other natural resources also that are not found as easily. These include minerals and fossil fuels. Here are essays on natural resources of varying word lengths to help you with the same in your exam. You can select any natural resources essay as per your need:

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Long and Short Essay on Natural Resources in English

Natural resources essay – 1 (200 words).

Natural resources are the resources that are available naturally on our planet. We do not require any human intervention to derive them. These resources are essential for the survival of living beings. While some of the natural resources such as air, water and sunlight are used directly; others serve as raw material to produce various items of necessity.

Many of the natural resources are present in abundance and are renewable. This means that these can be recycled and reused. However, there are many others that are non-renewable or take thousands of years to replenish. Many natural resources are depleting fast. This is owing to several reasons. One of the main reasons is the growth in population. The consumption of natural resources is on an increase continually owing to the rapid population growth.

Deforestation is another cause for the depletion of natural resources. Land is being used for urbanization. This has led to the loss of wildlife and trees. The raw material derived from them is thus decreasing by the day. The growing pollution is affecting the water bodies negatively. The coming generations may have to face scarcity of water that was once available in abundance.

It is high time we humans must stop wasting the natural resources and use them wisely.

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Natural Resources Essay – 2 (300 words)

Introduction

Natural resources are the resources that are made available by nature. Man does not have to work to derive these resources. Some of the examples of natural resources include water, air, sunlight, wood, minerals and natural gases. While many of the natural resources are available abundantly in nature others take time to form and are not available as freely.

Types of Natural Resources

While the characteristics and use of each natural resource is different from the other, these have broadly been classified in two categories. These are the renewable natural resources and non-renewable natural resources. Here is a look at these in detail:

  • Renewable Natural Resources : Renewable natural resources, as the name suggests are the ones that can be renewed naturally and used over and over again. Water, solar energy, wood, biomass, air and soil fall under this category. While many of these resources such as water, air and sunlight is easily renewable it takes time to renew natural resources such as wood and soil. Renewable resources are further categorized into organic and non-organic.

When renewable resources are derived from living things like animals and plants these are termed as organic renewable resources. When renewable resources are derived from non-living things, they are termed as inorganic renewable resources.

  • Non-Renewable Natural Resources : These are the resources that cannot be renewed or recycled or take a very long time to form again. Coal, oil, minerals and natural gases are examples of non renewable natural resources. While these form naturally without any human intervention, non-renewable natural resources such as minerals may take thousands of years to form. These are also divided into two categories – Organic and Non-organic.

Non-renewable natural resources derived from living organisms are called organic natural resources. One of the examples of this can be fossil fuel.

Non-renewable natural resources derived from non-living things such as wind, minerals, land and soil are known as inorganic natural resources.

Natural resources, especially the non-renewable resources, must be used wisely so that these are not depleted from nature.

Natural Resources Essay – 3 (400 words)

Natural Resources are the resources that have been available in nature since the beginning of the time. These resources make life possible on earth. Life on our planet would not have been possible without natural resources such as air, sunlight and water. Other natural resources are also as important and have become an integral part of our life.

Natural Resources Employed to Different Uses

While natural resources fulfil the basic necessities of man and other living beings on earth, they also form the basis for deriving various things. These things make life easier and comfortable. Today, man cannot imagine his life without most of these. Here is a look at the various ways in which natural resources are used:

  • Sunlight : It is used to generate solar power which is used in various appliances. Sunlight also enables the process of photosynthesis.
  • Air : Air is used to generate wind energy. Wind mills are employed to generate the same. It is used for various purposes such as grinding grains and pumping water.
  • Water : Water is used to generate hydroelectric energy. It is also used for various cleaning tasks and cooking.
  • Minerals : Minerals are used for generating several items that are used in our day to day lives. Wires, aluminium cans and parts of automobiles are among some of the things that are made with different kinds of minerals. Minerals such as gold and silver are used to craft jewellery.
  • Natural gases : These are used to generate electricity. These are also used in the kitchen for the purpose of heating.
  • Coal : This is another natural resource which is used for the purpose of generating electricity.
  • Plants : Plants offer a number of natural resources such as wood, fruits and vegetables. While fruits and vegetables are essential to keep the living beings alive, wood is used to manufacture various pieces of furniture, paper and other products.
  • Animals : Animals also provide numerous natural resources. They provide milk which is used to produce curd, cheese, butter and many other dairy products. Animal fur and skin are also used to derive various clothing items and other things of necessity. Woollen sweaters and caps, leather belts and bags, silk saris and bed linens are among some of the things made with the natural resources derived from animals.

Thus, natural resources are not only useful in their raw form but are also useful when they are employed to generate other stuff. Man has certainly made use of these resources in the best possible ways to make life better.

Natural Resources Essay – 4 (500 words)

Natural resources are a gift of the nature. These are consumed by the living organisms directly as well as indirectly. Direct consumption of natural resources implies using these resources in their pure form. The best examples of these can be sunlight and oxygen. Indirect consumption of natural resources means using them by modifying them or by generating other goods and services with their help. For instance, minerals, wood and many other natural resources are crafted into different materials before putting them to use.

Uses of Different Natural Resources

Natural Resources offer several uses. Without these, life would not be possible on earth. As per a survey, the developed countries use greater amount of natural resources compared to under-developed countries. Here is how these are used for various purposes:

Natural resources produced by animals are the kind of natural resources that are much in demand. This is because they provide us food which is essential for the survival of the living beings. Animals are tamed and reared to fetch organic natural resources from them. Milk and other dairy products that provide essential nutrients to the living beings are derived from animals. Fossil fuels derived from animal wastes are also employed for various tasks such as heating, running vehicles and generating electricity. Animal fur and skin is used for manufacturing clothes, bags, shoes, belts and other such items.

Plants provide us with fruits and vegetables that are essential for the survival of the living beings. Various medicines for curing different illnesses are also produced from these natural resources. Plants also provide us oxygen and absorb the harmful and toxic gases such as carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide. This functions naturally without any human interaction. Besides, plant waste also contributes in producing fossil fuels which are used in various ways.

Apart from this, trees provide wood that is used for various purposes such as constructing houses, crafting furniture, making paper and producing various other big and small things that we cannot do without.

  • Minerals and Metals

Metals and minerals are also used for different purposes. All of these have their unique properties and are useful in their own way. Some of the uses of minerals and metals include creating batteries, manufacturing medical equipments, manufacturing automobile parts, crafting jewellery, constructing buildings and manufacturing utensils. These resources are limited and fall under the non-renewable natural resources category.

  • Sunlight, Air and Water

The importance and use of these natural resources is known to all. These are available in abundance in the atmosphere and are used directly in their pure unadulterated form by the living beings. These are also modified and used to run various processes. Fortunately, these are renewable natural resources and are replenished and replaced easily.

We consume a good amount of natural resources on a daily basis knowingly or unknowingly. While some of these are abundantly available in the atmosphere, most of these are fast depleting from earth. It is essential to use the natural resources wisely and stop any kind of wastage to ensure that these are available for our coming generations too. The government of every country must keep a check on the consumption of these resources and take measures to reduce wastage.

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Natural Resources Essay – 5 (600 words)

Natural Resources are bliss for the mankind as well as other living organisms. These form an essential part of our lives. In fact, life on earth wouldn’t be possible without most of these natural resources.

Distribution of Natural Resources

Natural resources are distributed unevenly on Earth. Different parts of the planet are rich in different kinds of natural resources. While some places receive abundance of sunlight others remain devoid of the same for most part of the year. Similarly, while certain places have numerous water bodies others have rich mineral fields. There are many factors that influence uneven distribution of natural resources. Climate and land type are among the main factors.

Countries that boast of rich reserves of natural resources include China, Iraq, Venezuela, Russia, Saudi Arabia, United States of America, Canada and Brazil. Here is a look at the natural resources these countries are rich in:

Russia ranks number one when it comes to natural resources. The country boasts of abundance of timber, oil, natural gas, coal and gold. One of the main reasons of its economic growth is export of these valuable natural resources.

China has a rich reserve of coal, timber and various metals. It supplies these resources to various parts of the world.

Iraq is known to have a whopping 9% of the total world’s oil deposits. Besides oil, it is also rich in phosphate rock.

The country is rich in natural resources such as natural gas, iron and oil. It ranks six worldwide when it comes to oil reserves. It exports oil to many countries around the world.

  • Saudi Arabia

The country encompasses the fifth largest natural gas reserve. Timber is also found in abundance in Saudi Arabia.

  • United States

The United States comes on the second position when it comes to the availability of natural resources. It is known for its coal, natural gas and oil reserves and gold and copper deposits.

Canada comes on number four when it comes to the availability of natural resources. It is known for its oil deposits. It supplies oil to various countries worldwide. It is also known for its uranium, phosphate and natural gas reserves and timber production.

Brazil is the world’s second largest iron producer. It also generates a good amount of timber which is supplied to various countries worldwide. Besides, Brazil is known for its deposits of uranium and gold.

Similarly, different regions grow different kinds of fruits and vegetables and export them to other places. Same is the case with animals. All kinds of animals are not available everywhere. The raw materials they produce are thus exchanged between countries.

Impact of Uneven Distribution of Natural Resources

This uneven distribution of natural resources gives way to international trades which promotes businesses and boasts the economic growth of various countries around the world. However, it also has a downside to it. It has led to power play among the countries. Countries that have higher deposits of oil, natural gases, minerals and other natural resources control and exploit those that have fewer resources. Due to this the rich and developed countries are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.

While natural resources are essential for us so much so that our life on earth is not possible without the existence of these resources, human beings are using these without any inhibition. They do not realise the fact that most of these resources are non-renewable and many others take thousands of years to renew. We must use natural resources wisely and avoid any kind of wastage to help our future generations enjoy the kind of comfort and luxury we enjoy.

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Essay on Conservation of Natural Resources for Students and Children

500+ words essay on conservation of natural resources.

Natural resources are something that is occurring naturally on Earth. It forms an indispensable part of our lives. It comprises of air, water, sunlight, coal , petroleum, natural gas, fossil fuels, oil, etc. However, they are exploited by humans for economic gain. Natural resources are at depletion because of the overuse. Some of these resources are available in abundance with the capability to renew. On the other hand, some are non-renewable . Thus, it demands a responsible behavior for the conservation so as to ensure their sustainability.

essay on conservation of natural resources

Why Conserve Natural Resources?

Human beings depend upon the natural resources for their development activities. If the resources are not used wisely, it would create an imbalance in the environment. Thus would head us in opposition to an eco-friendly atmosphere. The need for conservation arises from the significance of natural resources. It is as follows-

  • Water is a renewable natural resource . We use it for drinking, producing electricity, irrigation, in various industries and for a number of activities. Its scarcity would cause loss of vegetation, adverse effect on flora and fauna, erosion of soil, etc.
  • Plants and animals provide a wide range of industrial and biological materials. Also, it assists in the manufacturing of medicine and for various other uses.
  • It takes millions of years for the formation of natural resources.
  • Fossil fuels are of great importance. A lot of energy is produced from coal, oil and natural gas all of which are fossil fuels.
  • Forest is the most important natural resource which helps in economic development . Forest provides paper, furniture, timber, medicine, gum, etc. Also, it maintains a balance in the ecosystem. Moreover, it prevents soil erosion and protects wildlife.
  • Land resources support natural vegetation, wildlife, transport. The land also provides us food, cloth, shelter, and other basic needs.

Get the huge list of more than 500 Essay Topics and Ideas

Ways to Conserve Natural Resources

Different ministries of the Government, national and international agencies have been working for the purpose of conserving the natural resources .

  • Environment education must be imparted by including the same in the curricula of the schools.
  • National Parks are making an effort for the safety of the natural resources.
  • By reducing, reusing and recycling of non-renewable resources.
  • Non-human species must be disturbed only to meet the basic needs.
  • Planting of more and more trees to save our forest resources.
  • Seeking alternatives to non-renewable resources.
  • By increased use of bio-gas and bio-fuels.
  • By preventing the dumping of industrial wastes into the river bodies. This is a measure to protect the rich marine life.
  • Overgrazing must be prevented. Also, poaching of animals must be controlled.
  • Practicing crop rotation techniques helps in maintaining the fertility of the soil.
  • Burning of fossil fuels emits carbon-di-oxide which is a major greenhouse gas. It is responsible for the greenhouse effect. Thus, the burning of fossil fuels must be controlled.

These are some of the measures which we can undertake for the conservation of natural resources. As Human- beings, we have a social responsibility to fulfill towards nature. Thus, while using resources, we shall follow the principle of sustainable development.

Natural resources are a present for the creation. These help in satisfying the human needs to its fullest. Furthermore, the rational use of natural resources maintains the earth’s atmosphere. Also, the wise use leads to protection of bio-diversity. Humans cannot imagine their lives without natural resources. Thus, the conservation of the same is essential.

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A Tale of Two Worlds

May 21, 2024.

Wild tulips blossom in spring. Photo: Andrea Egan/UNDP

Wild tulips blossom in spring.

natural resources essay on

Midori Paxton

Director of Nature Hub, UNDP Bureau for Policy and Programme Support  

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness..., it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”

So began ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ by Charles Dickens. 

This quote is especially resonant today as we mark this year’s International Day of Biological Diversity . We have already achieved much progress.  Since 1990, extreme poverty in the world has fallen from 36% to 9.2%. The maternal mortality rate dropped by 34% between 2000 and 2020. Global GDP is at $100 trillion, up from $3 trillion in 1970.  We have achieved remarkable leaps forward in digitalization, technology, medicine and the creative arts.

But this is also the ‘age of foolishness’. The construct of development was previously premised on the assumptions that natural resources are infinite, and that environmental destruction and pollution are an inevitable part of progress. Our myopic vision of growth has been blind to the value of nature upon which all economic and social activities depend.  We somehow lost sight of the fact that we too are part of nature, and that overexploitation of natural resources is detrimental to our own survival and wellbeing as a species. Simply stated, there is no sustainable development on an unlivable planet, no 1.5° target without nature, and no human rights without a healthy environment. 

We have become inveigled by the notion of exponential economic growth. Growth based on resource extraction and environmental degradation, and the production of products. Growth based on the sale of harmful substances, hazardous chemicals, compromised food, polluted air in our lungs, and microplastics in our bodies. Growth that brings with it inequity, debt, and deteriorating physical and mental health. Within the GDP growth fallacy, lives and livelihoods are put at stake when GDP growth slows down.

We know that exponential growth without end doesn’t exist in nature.  We know we have transgressed six out of nine planetary boundaries, exploiting the natural world beyond its limit for natural recovery and regeneration. Climate change is directly  contributing to humanitarian emergencies from heatwaves, wildfires, floods, tropical storms and hurricanes; pollution is killing 9 million people per year, and we’re losing as many as 1,000 species per day, impacting the ecological health of our land, water and food. Are we living in a time of wisdom?

Wisdom dictates that we have no choice but to internalize the environmental consequences within our current economic paradigm as part of the solution to the many challenges we face.  For example, if renewable energy development is dependent on non-renewable resources (e.g. critical minerals), how can we transition to a decarbonized energy system while avoiding the additional environmental and social costs of mining? How do we overhaul our food systems to ensure nature-positive, low-carbon, and climate-resilient production, and to ensure that everyone has enough food to live a decent life? 

New economic paradigms are is needed to translate the decades-old ‘Beyond GDP’ concept into action, to create a world where people are happy and content. 

We need our economies to serve human needs and wellbeing rather than one that thrives on the misery of people. We need a new economy that supports equity and inclusivity. 

We need to conceptualize what was previously inconceivable.  Do we really need to increase food production to solve hunger? UNEP’s  Food Waste Index Report 2024  says nearly one-fifth of food available to consumers is wasted. This is in addition to the 13% of food lost in the supply chain. If we eliminate food waste in households, this can provide 1.3 meals every day for everyone affected by hunger. Do we really need to produce dramatically more energy to ensure universal access?  Scientists tells us that despite population growth,  by 2050 global energy use could be reduced to 1960 levels   to meet the minimum universal energy needs for a decent living.  This would require advanced technologies and a reduction in energy demands, but crucially - it does not require a fallacious 'infinite growth' mindset.

Today is the International Day for Biodiversity.  To be ‘Part of the Plan’ towards living in harmony with nature by 2050, we have no choice but to create a new economic paradigm. An economy that serves people, that does not maintain or increase inequality, that thrives on an increase in people’s happiness and welfare, that protects and regenerates essential ecosystem services, and that creates jobs and livelihoods for social and environmental goods. In short, we must create an economy that produces what we really need. 

This will require shifts in how we value our lives, how we value the natural world on which we depend, and how we define success and a wider vision of our purpose on this planet. We need comprehensive change. With UNDP’s Nature Pledge and its focus on working with all partners to catalyse shifts in how we value nature, how we make economic and financial decisions, and how we change our policies and practices, we can all be Part of the Plan. And with the UNDP Nature Pledge, with its focus on value, economic and finance, and policy and practice shift, we can be part of Dickens’ ‘Spring of Hope’ as well.

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  • State Technical Committees Every state has an NRCS State Technical Committee. The State Technical Committee advises the State Conservationist on technical guidelines necessary to implement the conservation provisions of the Farm Bill.
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Soil Science

NRCS delivers science-based soil information to help farmers, ranchers, foresters, and other land managers effectively manage, conserve, and appraise their most valuable investment — the soil.

  • Conservation Technical Assistance Helps producers identify conservation objectives and a roadmap for conservation on their operation.
  • Conservation Concerns Tool Use this tool to learn about natural resource concerns that may impact your ag operation (farmers.gov).
  • Engineering NRCS applies sound engineering tools and principles to plan, design, and implement conservation practices and systems through delegated approval authority.
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  • How to Apply Follow our step-by-step process to get started making improvements on your land with our one-on-one conservation assistance.
  • Payment Schedules Review the amount and availability of financial assistance for selected conservation practices in your state.
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  • Nutrient Management This practice helps producers reduce input costs, maximize yields, and efficiently manage nutrients.
  • Organic Agriculture Conservation and organics go hand-in-hand, and NRCS offers tools for organic farmers to improve their operations.
  • Urban Agriculture Conservation assistance is available for urban farmers, including high tunnels, soil health practices, composting and irrigation.

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Conservation Technical Assistance

Conservation Technical Assistance (CTA)  provides our nation’s farmers, ranchers and forestland owners with the knowledge and tools they need to conserve, maintain and restore the natural resources on their lands and improve the health of their operations for the future.

  • Environmental Quality Incentives Program Provides assistance to agricultural producers to address natural resource concerns.
  • Regional Conservation Partnership Program Brings together partners to expand the reach of NRCS conservation programs.
  • Conservation Innovation Grants Brings together partners to innovate on conservation approaches and technologies.
  • Conservation Stewardship Program Helps agricultural producers take their conservation efforts to the next level.
  • Voluntary Public Access and Habitat Incentive Program Helps state and tribal governments improve public access to private lands for recreation.
  • Agricultural Management Assistance Helps agricultural producers manage financial risk through diversification, marketing or natural resource conservation practices.
  • Wetland Mitigation Banking Program Offers competitive grants to support wetland mitigation banks for ag producers.
  • Conservation Reserve Program The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) provides a yearly rental payment to farmers who remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and plant species that will improve environmental health and quality.
  • Agricultural Conservation Easement Program Helps producers protect wetlands, grasslands and farmlands for future generations.
  • Wetland Reserve Easements Helps private and tribal landowners protect, restore, and enhance wetlands degraded by agricultural uses.
  • Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership Brings together partners and producers to protect wetlands.
  • Healthy Forests Reserve Program Helps landowners restore, enhance, and protect forestland resources on private and tribal lands and aids the recovery of endangered and threatened species.
  • Agricultural Land Easements Helps private and tribal landowners, land trusts, and other entities protect croplands and grasslands on working farms and ranches.
  • Appraisal Submission Center Centralized point for submitting valuation reports and reviews for easement programs.
  • Emergency Watershed Protection Assists communities recovering from natural disasters.
  • Watershed and Flood Prevention Operation Offers assistance to communities to address watershed resource concerns.
  • Watershed Rehabilitation Rehabilitates NRCS dams to comply with design safety performance standards.
  • Landscape Conservation Initiatives Accelerates conservation benefits through targeted efforts for water quality, water quantity and wildlife.
  • Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Nationwide collaborative process working to maintain and improve the management, productivity, and health of privately owned grazing land.
  • High Tunnel Provides targeted assistance to promote use of high tunnels, which offer many benefits including longer growing season.
  • On-Farm Energy Initiative Assistance to inventory and analyze farm systems that use energy and identify ways to improve efficiency through an Agricultural Energy Management Plan.
  • Sentinel Landscapes Initiative The Sentinel Landscapes Partnership is a coalition of federal agencies, state and local governments, and nongovernmental organizations that work with private landowners.

RPCC

Regional Conservation Partnership Program

The Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) is a partner-driven approach to conservation that funds solutions to natural resource challenges on agricultural land. 

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Technical guides are the primary scientific references for NRCS. They contain technical information about the conservation of soil, water, air, and related plant and animal resources.

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USDA Invests $7 Million in Wetland Mitigation Banking to Support Producers and Protect We...

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USDA Conservation Efforts Support Pollinators, Agricultural Production Nationwide

  • Find a Service Center Access local services provided by the Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the Rural Development agencies.
  • Find An Employee Looking for a particular employee of NRCS? Find them in the USDA Employee Directory.
  • State Office Contacts Our State Offices Directory provides contact information for NRCS State Office Representatives.
  • National Information and Centers Find information about NRCS National Programs and Centers.

Biden-Harris Administration to Invest $50 Million in Projects that Restore Natural Functions and Values of Wetlands As Part of Investing in America Agenda

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USDA to invest up to $50 million in FY24 through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership to support conservation partners with local projects that help protect, restore and enhance critical wetlands on agricultural lands and help mitigate climate change.  

WASHINGTON, May 29, 2024 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will invest up to $50 million in fiscal year 2024 through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership (WREP) to support conservation partners with local projects that help protect, restore and enhance critical wetlands on agricultural lands and help mitigate climate change as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. With funding from the 2018 Farm Bill and the Inflation Reduction Act—the largest climate investment in history, including historic funding for conservation easements and other conservation programs—WREP empowers eligible conservation partners to work with local agriculture producers to protect, restore and enhance high-priority wetlands on agricultural lands.  

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting proposals until August 16, 2024.  NRCS is prioritizing proposals that focus on producers who conserve wetlands in or that are anticipated to benefit disadvantaged communities, contributing to NRCS’ effort to advance equity and environmental justice in its delivery of conservation programs.  

“Our goal is to leverage the Inflation Reduction Act’s additional funding to help mitigate climate change through our conservation programs while protecting and improving critical natural resources like wetlands and wildlife habitat,” said NRCS Chief Terry Cosby. “The Wetland Reserve Enhancement Program takes a collective focus amongst partners and producers, with persistent engagement in conservation activities that helps grow the healthy functions and values of wetland ecosystems on working lands.”  

WREP enables effective integration of wetland restoration on working agricultural landscapes, providing meaningful benefits to farmers and ranchers who enroll in the program and to the communities where the wetlands exist.  

Broader Biden Administration Efforts

WREP projects contribute to the Biden-Harris Administration’s America the Beautiful Freshwater Challenge , a new initiative to conserve and restore freshwater resources across the country. The Freshwater Challenge sets a bold, new national goal to protect, restore, and reconnect 8 million acres of wetlands and 100,000 miles of our nation’s rivers and streams by 2030, and calls on conservation partners to advance their own actions in support of these shared goals.

WREP also advances President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative , which sets a goal that 40% of the overall benefits of certain federal climate, clean energy, and other investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution.  

How WREP Works  

WREP is part of the  Agricultural Conservation Easement Program  (ACEP). Through WREP, states, local units of government, non-governmental organizations, and Tribal Nations collaborate with NRCS through cooperative and partnership agreements. These partners work with Tribal and private landowners who voluntarily enroll eligible land into easements to protect, restore and enhance wetlands on their properties. This includes marginal croplands, which are less productive because of repeated flooding or standing water.

NRCS is committed to the success of all of our nation’s producers, businesses and partners. Some of our nation’s producers belong to communities that have been marginalized or that are marginalized, which reduced the ability to farm and ranch successfully. These producers play a vital role in securing a healthy agricultural economy for our country and protecting, enhancing and sustaining our valuable natural resources. NRCS encourages proposal submissions from entities that represent, are partnered with, or are composed entirely of producers belonging to these communities.

Wetland easements protect habitats for wildlife and are also excellent “carbon sinks” that offer much needed buffers from flood waters while providing resiliency to productive agricultural lands.    

Restoring wetland ecosystems helps filter sediments and chemicals to improve water quality downstream, enhance wildlife and aquatic habitat, reduce impacts from flooding, recharge groundwater and offers recreational benefits.   

Eligible partners include Tribes, state and local governments, and nongovernmental organizations. WREP partners are required to contribute a financial or technical assistance fund match. Proposals must be limited to $10 million in federal funding and should include a breakdown of project activities.  

Through the 2018 Farm Bill, NRCS has invested approximately $104 million in WREP projects.  

How to Apply  

Partners should apply through their NRCS state office . This NRCS bulletin has additional information on how to apply.  

Partners looking to learn more about opportunities for WREP funding for fiscal year 2024 are encouraged to attend the WREP workshop on June 20, 2024, at 2 p.m. EST . Partners interested in attending should contact Ken Kriese, national ACEP-Wetland Reserve Easements program manager, at [email protected] to be added to the Teams invitation.

More Information  

This new funding provides $25 million from the 2018 Farm Bill and an equal amount from President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, the largest clean energy and climate investment in history. Funds will be delivered through the ACEP – Wetland Reserve Easements.  

To strengthen implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act, NRCS is streamlining ACEP , to ensure that the program is easier and more convenient to use. Specifically, NRCS is streamlining ACEP appraisals, land surveys and certifying eligible entities who help NRCS and producers enroll land into agricultural land easements. Additionally, NRCS is working with partners to help NRCS to increase capacity and acquire more conservation easements.  

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit usda.gov .    

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.

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Maryland Departments of Agriculture and Natural Resources Confirm Fall Cankerworm Outbreak in Garrett County

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ANNAPOLIS, MD (May 29, 2024) – The  Maryland Department of Agriculture  and  Maryland Department of Natural Resources  have confirmed an outbreak population of  fall cankerworm ( Alsophila pometari )  in  Garrett County  caused heavy defoliation of hardwood trees on  Meadow Mountain in Deep Creek Lake State Park . Defoliation is visible from  Glendale Bridge  and extends north from  State Park Road . The  Maryland Department of Agriculture Forest Pest Managemen t,  Maryland Park Service , and  Maryland Forest Service  are working together to map and monitor the ~700-acre outbreak. Outbreak populations of this caterpillar are also occurring north of Route 68 near Keysers Ridge.

Fall cankerworm is a native caterpillar that occasionally reaches outbreak populations. Defoliation is similar to that of the invasive spongy moth ( Lymantria dispar dispar ), but has a different appearance. Spongy moth caterpillars are 3 inches or more and hairy, whereas fall cankerworm caterpillars are 1-2 inches long, smooth, and move in a classic “inchworm” pattern.

The affected area will look like winter in summer; trees affected by outbreak populations of fall cankerworm will have all their leaves eaten, usually with only the leaf midvein remaining. The trees are not dead and will grow a new set of leaves by late June and early July. Repeated cankerworm defoliation, especially in stressed trees on high ridge tops, can cause mortality. However, unlike a spongy moth outbreak, natural enemies like birds, Calosoma beetles, parasitic wasps, and various naturally occurring diseases usually cause high populations of fall cankerworm to crash before major tree mortality occurs.

Park patrons should expect large numbers of ~1-2 inch caterpillars hanging from the trees on silk threads, and falling to the ground in these areas. Defoliation, caterpillars, and frass (caterpillar droppings) will be particularly noticeable near the Thayerville lookout tower and along the Western portion of the Meadow Mountain Trail. Caterpillars will remain in the area until mid-June when they begin to pupate in the soil.

For more information on fall webworm and other forest pests in the State of Maryland, please visit the Maryland Forest Pest Management website at  https://bit.ly/45cbEhH.

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New Federal Investments in Community and Indigenous-Led Projects to Support Vehicle Decarbonization

From: Natural Resources Canada

News release

At the BEV In-Depth: Mines to Mobility Conference, Marc G. Serré, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and to the Minister of Official Languages, on behalf of the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, announced an investment to support zero-emissions and clean fuels awareness projects.

May 30, 2024       Sudbury, Ontario                                     Natural Resources Canada

Reducing pollution from the transportation sector is helping to fight climate change and ensure clean air in our communities. That’s why the Government of Canada is helping Canadians across the country make the switch to zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), including battery-electric vehicles (BEVs).

Yesterday, at the BEV In-Depth: Mines to Mobility Conference, Marc G. Serré, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and to the Minister of Official Languages, on behalf of the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, announced an investment to support zero-emissions and clean fuels awareness projects.

Investments in ZEV and clean fuels awareness projects

Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) is investing over $2.1 million in six Indigenous-led Awareness Projects and one Zero-Emission Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicle Awareness Project. These projects will support Canadian drivers and companies in accessing and understanding lower-carbon alternatives when choosing their next vehicle, such as electric and hydrogen vehicles or micro-mobility solutions like e-bikes.

Federal funding for these projects was provided through the Zero Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative, which supports outreach, education and capacity-building activities, ultimately boosting the widespread adoption of ZEVs among personal vehicle owners, fleet owners, communities, businesses and Indigenous Peoples.

NRCan funding has been awarded to the following organizations:

·       $35,325 to Zero Nexus Inc. to develop content to address operational challenges that accelerate the adoption of battery electric vehicle technology adoption within the mining industry across Canada.

·       $450,000 to the First Nations Power Authority (FNPA) in Regina, Saskatchewan, to increase awareness, participation and knowledge transfer about clean fuels and clean fuel technologies among Indigenous communities and educational institutions. 

·       $450,000 to elibird aero inc. in Delta, B.C., to bring Indigenous knowledge and guide a new zero-emission transportation narrative and increase awareness of zero-emission aircraft technologies.

·       $450,000 to iTOTEM klassa in Vancouver, B.C., to promote the role of clean fuels in lowering the carbon intensity of industry, while showcasing the opportunity for new careers in the energy transition relevant to Indigenous youth, the Indigenous workforce and rural Canadians.

·       $339,264 to Four Winds and Associates Inc.   in Enoch, Alberta, to educate Indigenous community leadership and community members across Alberta about the benefits of zero-emission vehicles and low-carbon transportation solutions.

·       $296,920 to Manitoba Free Ride in Stony Mountain, Manitoba, to inform and educate Manitoba First Nations and the Indigenous population in general about the potential of electric vehicles and the necessary infrastructure to support the transition.

·       $113,000 to Peguis Consultation and Special Projects Inc. in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to increase awareness and knowledge of the benefits of all types of zero-emission vehicles and related infrastructure among members of the Peguis First Nation and other regional First Nations.

“Zero-emission vehicles are helping Canadians to reduce emissions and save money on fuel while creating good jobs throughout the supply chain. Investing in zero-emission vehicles will put more Canadians in the driver’s seat on the road to a net-zero future and help achieve our climate goals.”   The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson Minister of Energy and Natural Resources 
“The Government of Canada is supporting Canadians to accelerate to a net-zero future, including by supporting the purchase, manufacturing and charging of electric vehicles. I am pleased to announce new supports for local organizations across the country to raise awareness about zero-emission vehicles to help Canadians make the switch. At the same time, the Government of Canada’s ZEV Hub will act as a one-stop shop for information on our investments and programs across departments.” Marc G. Serré Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and to the Minister of Official Languages
“Investing in ZEVs is essential for achieving a clean, sustainable future. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fostering innovation in the transportation sector are critical. Our government is supporting this transition and ensuring proper access to resources. As a member of the Natural Resources Committee, we have undertaken many studies that speak to the importance of achieving net zero and creating a sustainable future.”   Viviane Lapointe Member of Parliament for Sudbury

Quick facts

NRCan has supported several dozen awareness projects from coast to coast to coast since 2019 through its Zero Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative (ZEVAI), which aims to increase awareness, knowledge, understanding and public confidence in zero-emission vehicles and clean fuels. 

Canada’s Critical Minerals Strategy will guide the development of Canadian critical minerals resources and value chains — including metals for clean technologies like EVs and advanced batteries — to enable the transition to a low-carbon economy and support advanced technology and manufacturing. The Strategy is supported by nearly $4 billion in federal investments over eight years. 

Thanks to the funds invested to date by the Electric Vehicle and Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Deployment Initiative (EVAFIDI) and Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program , Natural Resources Canada has supported the installation of tens of thousands of chargers where Canadians live, work, travel and play.

Programs including the medium- and heavy-duty stream of the ZEVAI build on Transport Canada’s announcement of Incentives for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Zero-Emission Vehicles (iMHZEV) Program in July 2022. These incentives reduce emissions by helping businesses and communities across the country make the switch to zero-emission vehicles. 

The iMHZEV Program is expected to result in annual greenhouse gas emission reductions of up to 200,000 tonnes per year in 2026, growing to three million tonnes per year by 2030.  

Associated links

  • Zero Emission Vehicles Hub
  • Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative
  • 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan: Clean Air, Strong Economy
  • Building a green economy: Government of Canada to require 100% of car and passenger truck sales be zero-emission by 2035 in Canada

Natural Resources Canada Media Relations 343-292-6100 [email protected]

Carolyn Svonkin Press Secretary Office of the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Canada 343-597-1725 [email protected]

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