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Natural Resources and its Management

Management of Natural

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Home Science Science II Natural Resources and its Management

Management of Natural Resources Introduction


The term environment refers to the natural elements that make up the earth and surround living organisms, making life processes possible. Soil, water, air, light and temperature are the physical aspects of environment and are known as its 'abiotic' components. All plants and animals collectively make up the biological aspects of environment and are referred to as its 'biotic' components. Quite obviously, the environment has a great influence in the lives all living organisms on the planet. All our natural resources which we manipulate to satisfy human needs come from the environment. These are air, water, soil, minerals, coal, petroleum, animals and plants. They can be divided into two types:

Sub Topics 1. Inexhaustible Natural Resources 2. Exhaustible Natural Resources

Inexhaustible Natural Resources

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Resources that are unlimited in nature and are not likely to be exhausted by human activities fall under this category. Solar radiation, air, water, precipitation (rainfall, snow fall, etc.,) and atomic power are some instances of such resources. Some of them may undergo temporary imbalances due to human activity e.g. the quality of atmosphere due to air pollution.

Exhaustible Natural Resources

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Natural resources that are limited in nature and are liable to be degraded in quantity and quality by human activities are exhaustible natural resources. Examples are forests, soil, wild animals, minerals, fossil fuels etc. The understanding of the environment and its proper conservation, has gained

enormous importance since the last quarter of the 20th century. The terms environmental pollution, global warming, climate change, and destruction of rainforests, are all issues of global concern that are already affecting our lifestyles and sense of well being. One must be aware that governments are cutting across boundaries to reach global agreements on such matters. They are enacting laws to cut down the emission of green house gases, taking common measures to arrest climate change, and setting up international bodies to monitor measures to reduce air, water, soil pollution and deforestation in number of countries. For instance, car manufacturers in all countries have now to conform to international standards of vehicle exhaust emissions; agricultural produce having pesticide and fertilizer traces beyond acceptable levels are banned in major world markets. Every country now has in place a ministry dealing with the environment, complete with regulating bodies, air water and soil pollution laws. Also a host of local, national and international non-governmental organizations act as safe keepers of the environment. In the last 10- to 15 years has one noticed the effects of environment change being felt by our families? Ask yourselves as well as your elders if they have noticed any of the following happening. Water sources in cities, in rivers, lakes, or underground sources, rapidly disappearing and becoming contaminated. The quality of air becoming polluted in urban areas to levels that are causing serious health lung and heart diseases; our soil is also being contaminated by improper disposal of urban waste and by chemicals found in agricultural inputs. Unfavorable changes in local climates and extensive soil degradation caused by disappearance of a 'green habitat' and destruction of trees. May be its time to think about how one ought to be using our resources and to know more about how ones choices affect the environment. One needs to link the choices one makes in ones every day life towards utilizing resources in a proper manner - which sustains rather than depletes them, and by which our environment is conserved. One has to be open to change ones perceptions of the socioeconomic and environmental conditions that surround us, and be ready to alter the present way in which one uses natural resources.

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