To have knowledge on ways to conserve natural resources is essential because everything we use in our day-to-day life comes from the natural resources, such as the indirect derivation of food from soil and manufacturing of paper and furniture from trees.
Natural Resources are those resources that are found in nature. That is they are not man-made. Natural resources can include all important characteristics like aesthetic values, cultural values, scientific interests or commercial and industrial uses.
Any naturally occurring substance qualifies as a natural resource, including animals, plants, water, oil, coal, minerals, timber, land, light, soil, and energy. Natural resources can be renewable or non–renewable.
Renewable resources refer to undiminishable substances, such as solar energy, wind energy, energy from biomass, and hydropower.
Non-renewable resources refer to resources that cannot be naturally replenished at an adequate pace to meet growing demands. They include water, fossil fuels, natural gases, minerals, and nuclear energy.
Natural resources are important for survival. Land, forests, water, fisheries, minerals, and are all important to sustain life.
If over-exploitation continues in the same trajectory, there will be no natural resources left for future generations. Thus, it’s crucial to take action now. Fortunately, there are many ways to conserve natural resources, many of which you can do independently.
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10 Most Effective Ways to Conserve Natural Resources
Conserving natural resources doesn’t have to be a complicated affair. Thinking about massive volunteer efforts is great but there are small lifestyle changes you can embark on to do your part in overarching environmental conservation efforts.
Here are some easy and simple most effective ways we can conserve natural resources and protect the earth.
- Practice the Reuse of Goods.
- Use Renewable and Alternative Energy Sources
- Promote and Practice Recycling
- Practice Walking, Cycling or Carpool for Short Distances.
- Practice Water Conservation.
- Consume Less Meat and Chicken.
- Avoid Non-Recyclable Packaging.
- Management of Thermostat.
- Energy Conservation at Home.
- The Practice of In-situ and Ex-situ Conservation of Wildlife.
1. Practice the Reuse of goods.
Reusing of products plays a major role in conservation of resources. When products are reused, demand for new products is decreased which in turn affects the manufacturing of the products with raw materials.
For example, avoiding single-use plastics. Instead of buying water bottles, plastic cups, or paper plates, opt for ceramic, metal, or glassware.
Use your own fabric grocery bags rather than plastic bags. Reusing items is a great way to reduce waste and keep excess trash out of landfills and the environment. Very importantly reduce the demand for new products made of new raw materials.
2. Use Renewable and Alternative Energy Sources
Renewable and alternative energy sources are more environmentally friendly and bio-friendly, particularly because they do not produce harmful gases that cause damage to the environment.
Renewable energy are not easily depleted and can replenish itself, cutting down on our need to harvest new resources. Using solar panels or wind energy can significantly reduce our dependence on natural gas and cut back on resource depletion over time.
Switching between renewable and non-renewable energy usage can make a huge difference!
3. Promote and Practice Recycling
To manufacture new products, it requires the use of resources as raw materials, but recycling make do with the materials we already have to make a new product.
Manufacturing fewer new materials reduce wastes and helps decrease the use of raw materials in the environment.
For example, when we recycle paper and wood we save trees and forests, when we recycle plastic we create fewer new plastics and reduce the use of fossil fuel hydrocarbons.
In metal recycling there’s less need for risky, expensive and damaging mining and extraction of new metal ores, recycling glass reduces the need to use new raw materials like sand.
4. Practice Walking, Cycling or Carpool for Short Distances
The most biggest contributors to depleting fossil fuels are cars, so there is need to find alternative modes of transportation whenever possible. For example, if you’re only going a short distance, you can walk, cycle, use a bike or scooter instead of driving.
Cars can be convenient when the weather is horrendous in that case, consider carpooling like uber, lyft or public transport just to save fuel and reduce traffic and greenhouse gas emissions.
Reducing much driving to a large extent conserve resources and protect the environment.
5. Practice Water Conservation
This can be practiced in our different homes.
Such as: by taking lesser time while showering this aids the conservation of gallons of water, using your dishwasher or washing machine when there is a full load, switching to energy-saving appliances if possible, ensuring that taps are tightly twisted off when they are not in use, reusing water from sinks and showers to water outdoor gardens or backyards can also be a useful practice.
These can go long way to help conserve the available water resources in our different societies.
6. Consume Less Meat and Chicken
Sometimes it is not bad if you stop consuming meat and chicken. As a result of health benefits following the reduction in meat consumption, many people have been transitioning to plant-based or flexitarian diets.
However, more than this, eating less meat allows you to preserve the planet’s health. The heavy use of meat and chicken globally has led to an increase in demand.
Intensive livestock farming involves heavy use of natural resources and also the generating of greenhouse gas emissions, so by reducing your meat consumption, resources can be conserved and human carbon footprint can be lowered.
In substitution to the meat you can adopt more vegetables in our diet.
7. Avoid Non-Recyclable Packaging
Products such as processed foods come with vast amounts of packaging. Most times, the packaging is made out of single-use plastics or other non-renewable materials, which will likely end up in landfills.
However on the contrary, many brands are consciously switching to more eco-friendly packaging to help protect the planet. As a consumer, you can focus on buying products packed with recycled material like cardboard or recycled paper.
Generally try to avoid products made with single-use plastics and Styrofoam (non-recyclables). Instead, choose products packaged with recycled plastic and cardboard.
8. Management of Thermostat
Heating and air conditioning make up approximately half of your energy bill, but lowering the heat by just two degrees in the winter can help conserve energy in your home.
Therefore, lower your thermostat in winter and raise it in summer when leaving the house. This will not only help in energy saving effect but will also help you reduce monthly bills.
9. Energy Conservation at Home
Even the smallest actions can mean to energy savings at home. These include turning off the lights or televisions after use or when not in use, unplugging appliances like air conditioner, toasters etc when not in use. Apart from helping your electric bill, they’re also reducing your carbon footprint little by little.
Additionally, LED light bulbs require far less wattage than standard bulbs. Aside helping your electric bill, they are also reducing carbon footprint and also conserve resources.
10. The practice of In-situ and Ex-situ Conservation of Wildlife
This means to conserve the animals and plants in their natural habitats and also outside their natural habitats. In any case the in-situ conservation does not work the ex-situ will work.
Not only is the animals conserved but it is also essential to protect the sites in which these animals and plants are conserved.
This includes natural habitats include wildlife sanctuaries, parks, biosphere reserves and natural forests.
While the artificial or man-made habitat includes: pollen banks, botanical gardens, DNA banks, zoos, and tissue cultures.
These two strategies will ensure long-term survival of animal and plant species.
If we effectively conserve natural resources, we don’t only conserve the resources we also save the environment. which is important for our life now and that of the future generations.
Therefore, we must use natural resources very less because it is reducing with time. Just as the demand of natural resources is increasing on daily basis due to the increasing human population, that is the major reason for us to effectively utilize it so that we can save our nature and future.
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Ahamefula Ascension is a Real Estate Consultant, Data Analyst, and Content writer. He is the founder of Hope Ablaze Foundation and a Graduate of Environmental Management in one of the prestigious colleges in the country. He is obsessed with Reading, Research and Writing.