Conservation of natural resources
Introduction: Natural resources are derived from the environment. Some of them are essential for our survival while most are used for satisfying our wants. Natural resources may be further classified in different ways.
Natural resources are materials and components (something that can be used) that can be found within the environment. Every man-made product is composed of natural resources (at its fundamental level). A natural resource may exist as a separate entity such as fresh water, and air, as well as a living organism such as a fish, or it may exist in an alternate form which must be processed to obtain the resource such as metal ores, oil, and most forms of energy.
There is much debate worldwide over natural resource allocations, this is partly due to increasing scarcity (depletion of resources) but also because the exportation of natural resources is the basis for many economies (particularly for developed nations such as Australia).
Some Natural resources can be found everywhere such as sunlight and air, when it is so the resource is known as an ubiquitous (existing or being everywhere) resource. However most resources are not ubiquitous. They only occur in small sporadic areas; these resources are referred to as localized resources. There are very few resources that are considered inexhaustible (will not run out in foreseeable future) – these are solar radiation, geothermal energy, and air (though access to clean air may not be). The vast majority of resources are however exhaustible, which means they have a finite quantity, and can be depleted if managed improperly. The natural resources are materials, which living organisms can take from nature for sustaining their life or any components of the natural environment that can be utilized by man to promote his welfare is considered to be natural resources.
- Don't keep water taps running while brushing, shaving, washing or bathing.
- Check for water leaks in pipes and toilets and repair them promptly. A small pin-hole sized leak will lead to the wastage of 640 liters of water in a month.
- Use drip irrigation and sprinkling irrigation to improve irrigation efficiency and reduce evaporation.
- Install a small system to capture rain water and collect normally wasted used water from sinks, cloth-washers, bathtubs etc. which can be used for watering the plants
- Build rain water harvesting system in your house. Even the President of India is doing this.
2. Conserve energy:
- Turn off lights, fans and other appliances when not in use.
- Obtain as much heat as possible from natural sources. Dry the clothes in sun instead of drier if it is a sunny day.
- Use solar cooker for cooking your food on sunny days which will be more nutritious and will cut down on your LPG expenses.
- Grow deciduous trees and climbers at proper places outside your home to cut off intense heat of summers and get a cool breeze and shade. This will cut off your electricity charges on coolers and air-conditioners.
- Try riding bicycle or just walk down small distances instead of using your car or scooter.
3. Protect the soil:
- While constructing your house, don't uproot the trees as far as possible. Plant the disturbed areas with a fast growing native ground cover.
- Make compost from your kitchen waste and use it for your kitchen-garden or flower-pots.
- Do not irrigate the plants using a strong flow of water, as it would wash off the soil.
- If you own agricultural fields, do not over-irrigate your fields without proper drainage to prevent water logging and salinization.
- Use mixed cropping so that some specific soil nutrients do not get depleted.
4. Promote Sustainable Agriculture:
- Do not waste food. Take as much as you can eat.
- Reduce the use of pesticides.
- Fertilize your crop primarily with organic fertilizers.
- Eat local and seasonal vegetables. This saves lot of energy on transport, storage and preservation.
- Control pests by a combination of cultivation and biological control methods.
EQUITABLE USE OF RESOURCES FOR SUSTAINABLE LIFE STYLE:
- There is a big divide in the world as North and South, the more developed countries (MDC'S) and less developed countries (LDC'S), the haves and the have nots.
- The MDC's have only 22% of world's population, but they use 88% of its natural resources, 73% of its energy and command 85% of its income.
- As the rich nations continue to grow, they will reach a limit.
- If they have a growth rat of 10% every year, they will show 1024 times increase in the next 70 years.
- Will this much of growth be sustainable? The answer is 'No' because many of our earth's resources are limited and even the renewable resources will become unsustainable if their use exceeds their regeneration.
- Thus, the solution to this problem is to have more equitable distribution of resources and wealth.
- We cannot expect the poor countries to stop growth in order to check pollution because development brings employment and the main problem of these countries is to tackle poverty.
- The poor in the LDC'S are at least able to sustain their life.
- Unless they are provided with such basic resources, we cannot think of rooting out the problems related to dirty, unhygienic, polluted, disease infested settlements of these people-which contribute to unsustainability.