500+ Words Essay on Conservation of Natural Resources
“If conservation of natural resources goes wrong, nothing else will go right.” -M. S. Swaminathan
Natural resources are components of the earth, such as air, water, sunlight, iron ore, petroleum, atmosphere, etc. They are the assets of the planet that are formed without any human interference. They are broadly of 2 types; Renewable and Non-Renewable resources.
Renewable resources are the resources which get replenished even after continuous and abundant usage. They can be used repeatedly and are replaced naturally. The time frame for replenishment is also quite low. Examples of renewable resources include oxygen, solar energy, freshwater, etc.
Non-renewable resources are also known as finite resources. They take a long time to replenish and cannot keep up with the pace for its demand. Examples of non-renewable resources include coal, oil, gold, iron, etc.
Why are Natural Resources so Important?
All living organisms, especially humans, depend immensely on natural resources for their survival. An average person in Asia consumes about 14 kgs of natural resources per day. Natural resources provide us with food to eat. They give us vegetables, fish, nuts, medicines and drinking water. The utensils like spoons, forks and knives that are required to eat are also made from the raw materials that these natural resources provide.
All our transportation vehicles, including cars, trains and aeroplanes, make use of natural resources not only in their physical structures but also need resources to run on. All the stone, wood, plastic and metal that is required to build houses and roads also comes from these natural resources.
Threats to Natural Resources
Due to various reasons, these limited natural resources have been exploited and face the risk of depletion. Environmental pollution is a major threat to natural resources. The chemicals discharged from factories seep into the soil and water, thus harming its properties and making it unfit for use.
The untreated discharge also poses a great danger to aquatic life. The rapid increase in the human population is the single most significant reason why natural resources fall short. The demand for them has drastically increased. Because of more people to feed and house, more land is required for cultivation and housing.
This forces the need to cut down forests for urbanisation and agricultural activities. Due to various human activities, there is a great deal of climate change that has taken place. Excessive flooding, severe droughts, punishing forest fires, etc. are responsible for the extinction and vulnerability of many types of flora and fauna.
Ways to Conserve Natural Resources
Conservation of natural resources implies using limited resources judicially and economically, saving species from the verge of extinction, restoring habitats and protecting biological diversity. Following are some ways that can be followed to conserve them-:
Instead of using fossil fuels for energy, try switching over to alternatives. Make use of wind energy and solar energy. They are cheaper and also renewable. They do not destruct the ozone layer, unlike the burning of coal, charcoal, etc.
Planting trees serve multiple benefits. They help to prevent soil erosion by holding it in its roots. Trees also help in the conservation of wildlife as they pose as homes to numerous species of insects, animals and birds.
Water conservation is another crucial step that we all can take up at an individual level. Make sure that the taps in your bathrooms and kitchens are closed when not in use and always check for any leaks.
Taking shorter showers is also advisable. Reusing water is another technique that everyone at home can follow. For example, the water that you use to wash vegetables and fruits can be used to wash your car.
It is of utmost importance to treat industrial and human waste before discharging them into water bodies. They should be treated so that the harmful chemical elements in them are reduced.
The untreated discharge of factories and sewage plants causes water pollution, which poses a threat not only to human life but to aquatic life as well.
The activity of hunting or poaching is responsible for the extinction of many exotic species. Hunters sell animal skin and teeth in the black market and earn huge revenues. The government should formulate stricter policies and regulations to curb this unholy practice.
One other way of reducing our dependence on finite fossil fuels such as petroleum and diesel is by purchasing hybrid cars. Hybrid cars run on electricity and do not require the use of non-renewable resources that further pollute the environment.
Reducing the use of plastic should be encouraged. Always carry a cloth or jute bag with you whenever you visit your local grocery store or go shopping. Plastic is non-biodegradable and is a major polluter. Hence, its use should be minimised.
Farmers should practice crop rotation. Planting the same crop again and again on the same piece of land can cause the soil to lose its fertility.