Class VIII - Geography

Chapter 1 - Resources

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  1. Anything which has some utility or usability for us is called a resource.
  2. All resources have some value or worth.
  3. Some resources like gold have economic value and some resources like a beautiful landscape do not have any economic value, but both are important as they satisfy some human need. 
  4. A substance can be changed into resources by two very important factors - Time and Technology which is the application of latest knowledge and skill in doing or making things.
  5. Resources can become economically valuable with time.
  6. Every invention or discovery leads to other discoveries or inventions, like the discovery of fire led to the practice of cooking and the invention of wheel resulted in the development of new and better modes of transport.


Types of Resources

Resources can be catogorised into the following:

  1. Natural Resources
    • are resources that are drawn from nature and are used without much change or modification
    • are also called ‘gifts of nature’
    • Air, water, soils and minerals are the natural resources
    • Some of the natural resources can be used directly while for using some others we need the help of some tools or technology.
    • Natural resources are further categorised on the following basis:
      • Their level of development and use:
        • Actual
          • resources that are being used in the present
          • whose quantity is known
          • Example - coal, petroleum
        • Potential
          • resources that are not being used at present and could be used in the future once technology for that is properly developed
          • entire quantity may not be known
          • Example - the Uranium reserves in Ladakh

      • Their origin:
        • Biotic
          • includes all the resources that come from living things like plants and animals
          • Example - milk, leather, timber etc.
        • Abiotic
          • are resources that come from non-living things
          • Example - sunlight, soil, rocks and minerals

      • Their renewability / exhaustibility
        • Renewable
          • are resources which can get renewed or replenished quickly
          • are also called as Inexhaustible resources
          • Example - solar, wind or hydel energy
        • Non-Renewable
          • are resources that have a limited stock
          • Stock of Resource is the amount of resources that is available for use.
          • If the stocks are exhausted it may take thousands of years to be renewed or replenished.
          • are also called as Exhaustible resources
          • Example - coal, petroleum and natural gas

      • Their distribution
        • The distribution of natural resources is unequal across the earth and depends upon a number of physical factors like Topography, climate and altitude.
        • can be of the following types
          • Ubiquitous
            • resources that are found everywhere on the earth
            • Land, water, air are ubiquitous resources.
          • Localized
            • resources that are found only in certain places
            • Example - ores of copper and iron


  2. Human Made Resources
    • are natural resources that undergo some drastic change because of human intervention
    • Steel (a man-made resource) is made by processing iron ore (a natural resource).
    • Some examples of human made resources are bridges, buildings, railways and machines etc.
    • Technology is also a human made resource.


  3. Human Resources
    • refers to the number (quantity) and abilities (mental and physical) of the people
    • People are the human resources.
    • Education and health improves the quality of human resources.
    • People can make the best use of nature to create more resources when they have the knowledge, skill and the technology.
    • Improving the quality of people’s skills to enable them to create more resources is called human resource development.


Conserving Resources

  1. Most of the natural resources are limited in stock.
  2. Conservation of resources refers to using natural resources carefully so that in time they can be renewed and continue to be used in future.
  3. Carefully utilizing resources and balancing the need to use resources and conserve them for the future is called sustainable Development.
  4. Due to the excessive exploitation of water, shortage of water is being faced at many places.
  5. Due to excessive use, coal and petroleum are also going to be exhausted in the near future.
  6. It is our duty to ensure that all uses of renewable resources are sustainable and the diversity of life on the earth is conserved by minimizing the damage to natural environmental system.
  7. There are many ways of conserving resources. Each person can contribute by following the three Rs of conservation for sustainable development.
    • Reduce consumption
    • Reuse as many items as possible
    • Recycle discarded items wherever possible
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