Humans depend on natural resources for a very long time to build and maintain a good quality of life, and we should feel responsible for conserving these resources.
To waste, exhaust, or destroy our natural resources instead of using them to increase their usefulness will lead to loss or extinction in the future. We have the right to conserve these resources for future purposes.
Resources are things used to achieve a result that adds value to life. It is a source of income accessible to sustain and satisfy one’s needs and wants. All our efforts to defeat poverty and sustain our resources will be in vain if these resources continue to deplete.
For example, we will face severe water scarcity if we do not start saving water very soon. Likewise, there would be no wood left for us to build homes or make fires if we cut down all forests.
The conserving of our resources is a fundamental problem. Unless the problems are solved, there will be an unproductive land. We need to understand the value of these resources and conserve them because we should be able to use them throughout our lifetime and save them for future generations.
Let this article take you through the best 3 ways to conserve resources and point you in the right direction to make smarter decisions about how to utilize these resources.
The Classification of Resources
They include natural resources from living and non-living things, such as the earth and its atmosphere to support life.
They include renewable and non-renewable resources. These renewable resources have continuous sources of supply that are sustainable and can be replenished. Examples are the sun, wind, air, and water.
Non-renewable resources are limited in supply and can’t be replaced by natural means. Humans see them as a source of energy that can’t be sustained. Resources like natural gas and Coal are non-renewable.
- Status Development
This class of resources includes the potential and developed resources.
Resources that have not been touched to the smallest amount are the potential resources, whereas those that have been tapped for commercial use are the developed resources.
Wind and solar are referred to as potential resources, unlike thermal and forest, which are the developed resources.
Types of Resources
- Natural Resources
- Man-made Resources
- Human Resources
1. Natural Resources
Natural resources are made by nature and, without much change, are used by humans. They include the land, forests, water bodies, air, sunlight, rocks, minerals, and fossil fuels.
The air we breathe, the water we drink and the soil we till or plough on are natural gifts used directly. Also, in nature, fossil fuels are formed over millions of years underground, diamonds are formed from natural processes over billions of years, and ore deposits form from minerals.
2. Man-Made Resources
All human-made resources depend on the natural resources available. Some resources are obtained from humans using natural resources to make useful things that add value to life. It does not occur naturally.
Resources like Coal are used in the construction of roads; plastic polymers are formed by polymerization using fossil fuels. They go through some changes and are renewed by man’s use of intelligence, skills, knowledge, and technology. Examples are metals, and paper.
3. Human Resources
People use their skills and knowledge to make unique things from natural resources. They are designed to enhance efficiency, convenience, and quality of life, from technological devices such as tools, machines, and equipment to infrastructure such as roads, bridges, airports, seaports, railway networks, and communication towers.
These innovations made by human resources help support the functioning of humans and society.
Theory of Conservation of Resources
Dr. Stevan E. Hobfoll in 1989 proposed this theory, by describing the motivation that drives humans to maintain their current resources and pursue new ones.
The theory proposes stress encountered by humans when there is a threat of resource loss and a lack of gained resources following the use of resources.
Involving the protection of resources from being lost, basic principles were stated:
1. Primacy of Resource Loss
Loss of resources is more harmful than when there is a resource gain. When there are more resources, it will benefit humans and society, causing little or no effect on human life. It also implies that individuals may be more motivated to prevent resource loss than to acquire new resources.
2. Resource Investment.
To protect against resource loss, humans will invest in resources to recover from losses and to gain resources to prevent future resource losses.
There are also limitations in conserving resources based on the theory; some individuals may have different goals and values regarding resource conservation, and cultural differences, beliefs, and values may affect resources.
Conservation of Resources
Conservation of resources is all about preserving and caring for these resources that come directly or indirectly from nature. We are in a state where many natural resources have been lost due to human exploitation.
Humans have exploited the natural resources available from nature for Development. Our resources must be preserved for future use, which will produce beneficial changes to man and the environment.
Resources are conserved for their biological, economic, and recreational values as they are important to humans.
Conservation of resources also involves ethical use, high maintenance, re-establishment, and improvement to avoid waste.
3 Ways to Conserve Resources
We need to reduce the use of these resources to protect mankind and the earth’s environment by limiting how we exhaust materials faster than they are renewed.
In the following ways, you can reduce energy use by conserving natural resources. For example, most of our energy is produced by burning fossil fuels. We will naturally save our fossil fuels once we start saving energy.
Additionally, by walking more or cycling instead of using a motorbike. Using public transportation rather than driving alone can help conserve these resources.
Another example is turning off the lights and fan when not in use. Replace all your old appliances with better and more efficient ones. These little steps will have a huge impact on consumption resources.
Also, we can fight against climate change and preserve it for future generations by using less water to reduce waste of resources.
Nothing is a waste unless it has not found its usefulness, as one resource was never meant to accomplish just one thing.
New products are made by converting waste materials to make them suitable for reuse. These recycled products are used in manufacturing and consumer products for other purposes.
For example, we save trees and forests by recycling paper and wood; recycling plastic creates new plastics and reduces fossil fuel hydrocarbons.
By using the recycling method to conserve resources, energy is being reduced. Recycling methods could be classified into internal and external methods.
Internal Recycling uses the method of reusing materials that are waste products in an industry to form new products that are suitable for use by man.
On the other hand, the external recycling method uses useful materials obtained from a waste product that has been worn out. Examples are the plastic containers remelted to form new products.
The advantages of recycling compared to producing materials and objects from natural resources include:
- Fewer quarries and mines are needed to extract finite reserves of metal ores.
- Less crude oil must be extracted from the crust to make plastics.
- Recycling less energy is needed than making a new product from natural resources, so the emission of greenhouse gases is reduced.
- The amount of waste that is disposed of in landfills is reduced.
Before you throw your materials, know what items could be collected for recycling and encourage your household to recycle correctly.
The products we buy will miraculously disappear after we throw them away. Reusing an existing product nullifies the need to make a new one.
When resources are reused, demand for new products is decreased, affecting the manufacturing of the products with raw materials.
Material is restored for its original purpose or to fulfill a different function. It involves the use of materials for a long time before replacing them. A refillable bag pen can be reused multiple times before being thrown away.
Reusing materials helps save money and reduce the waste man generates.
Importance of Conserving Resources
- Survival: Man relies on resources for survival because, without them, we are as good as dead
- Reduce Pollution
- Preserve natural resources for future generations.
- Avoid human exploitation of natural resources
- Allow distribution of natural resources among all human beings equally
- Deforestation is controlled
- Saves money
- Improved human health
Ideas on How to Conserve Resources
- Planting Trees and Vegetation
- Increase National Parks and Wildlife Reserves.
- Use of Alternative Power Source
- Create Awareness
- Prevent Overgrazing
- Use Less Water
- Bio-fuels Usage
- Avoid Overfishing
- Technology Advancement
- Avoid Oil Spillage
1. Planting Trees and Vegetation
Over 15 billion per year trees are being cut down per year.
Deforestation has been a problem; the environment will be degraded without action to stop the loss of trees and forests.
Planting trees will help prevent erosion, create habitat for organisms and renew biodiversity.
2. Increase National Parks and Wildlife Reserves.
As animals are conserved, it is important to protect the home in which these animals and plants are conserved.
These habitats need to be protected from sustained assaults. Lack of effort to conserve these habitats has led to these unique animal species becoming extinct.
3. Use of Alternative Power Source
Solar energy produces clean, renewable, and emission-free electricity for your homes and doesn’t lead to any production of harmful substances that can affect the environment.
These energy sources are better than burning fossils, such as Coal and charcoal, considering they are more sustainable. You can also consider other renewable energy resources.
4. Create Awareness
The human population needs to become more conscious of the rate of resource consumption and the effects of resource depletion on everyone.
People can raise their understanding of these topics and make wise decisions by discussing them with their friends and families.
5. Prevent Overgrazing
Prevent livestock feeds on pasture to the point where no vegetation is left, as this will affect resources. There should be proper livestock management and land assessments.
Overgrazing tampers with the natural water cycle of an area. This leads to food shortage, pollution, and erosion
6. Use Less Water
Due to evaporation, wind, or runoff, 50% of water is wasted. Water should be conserved during the rainy season by harvesting rainwater.
This water is then used during dry seasons. Also, constructing reservoirs will help to regulate the amount of water and the practice of drip irrigation.
This minimizes the usage of water directly from water bodies.
7. Bio-fuels Usage
Over the century, fossil fuels have been the primary energy source. However, they are now depleting rapidly.
Alternative fuel sources, such as biofuels obtained from plant species, can be used. Bio-fuels are eco-friendly for the environment and reduce the occurrence of air pollution.
8. Avoid Overfishing
Aquatic life will be depleted due to overfishing. This may threaten aquatic species and cause them to become endangered, and some might migrate or go extinct. However, fishing should be regulated to protect the lives of aquatic organisms.
9. Technology Advancement
Technology advancements have made this possible, reducing the usage of natural resources.
Trees are cut down for the paper production. Creating a paperless system has helped minimize the cutting down of trees, thereby preserving natural resources.
10. Avoid Oil Spillage
The oil leaks are detrimental to flora and fauna. When exposed, most of these species die due to these oil spills. Pipelines should be used for Oil transportation.
Other Ideas to Conserve Resources
- Reduce food waste: This can be achieved by shopping smartly; essential needs should be bought, and unused food.
- To prevent waste, reuse or repurpose items such as old clothing, cloth grocery bags, and containers.
- When you compost, you recycle organic materials like food scraps and leaves into nutrient-rich soil.
- The use of energy-saving LED bulbs helps to minimize your energy bill.
- Proper Maintenance of Vehicle
- Eat Less Meat
- Buy used items to reduce waste and the emissions created by producing new materials or disposing of them in landfills.
- Materials like clothing, tires, and appliances should be maintained or repaired so that they won’t have to be thrown out and replaced as frequently.
- Use ceramic cups not Disposable cups
- Instead of driving, ride a bike or walk.
- Check water pipes for leaks.
- practice landfill
- Borrow, rent or share items used infrequently, like party decorations, tools or furniture.
- Earth-Bags should be used instead of plastic and paper Bags.
- Policies and Regulations for curbing poaching should be formulated.
1. What are Resources?
Resources are natural sources of wealth or features to improve quality of life. Humans and society attach value to it due to its usefulness. Examples are minerals, water, soil, wildlife, land, and air.
2. Why Should We Conserve Resources?
We need to understand the value of these resources and conserve them because we should be able to use them throughout our lifetime and save them for future generations.
As humans conserve resources, they protect, manage, and uplift the earth’s natural resources for current and future generations. Using skillful management and control strategies, we can utilize nature’s resources.
Because natural resources are depleting over time, we must use them extremely judiciously. The demand for natural resources is rising daily due to the growing human population, which is the main driver behind our need to use them wisely.
If we effectively conserve natural resources, we don’t only conserve the resources but also save the environment. This is important for our life now and future generations.
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