Environmental resources are natural features that are found in the environment. They provide materials, services, information, and benefits to both humans and animals. Some of these natural features include air, water, and land.
These resources are used for various purposes including agriculture, fishing, housing, transportation, and even cooking. These resources are either inorganic or abiotic.
Inorganic resources are material that comes from nonliving sources such as rocks and minerals. They can be recycled or reused. Fossil fuels are an example of a non-renewable resource. Usually, fossil fuels come from decayed organic matter. The formation of these resources takes millions of years.
Unlike inorganic resources, abiotic resources cannot be recycled. They are found in the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and lithosphere. However, they are degraded by chemical processes.
Biological resources include organisms such as plants, animals, and fungi. These organisms are important for supporting life on Earth. Biotic factors require the proper amount of nutrition and energy to function. Plants and animals are also capable of reproduction.
Besides biotic factors, abiotic factors include human beings, which are responsible for consuming and using these resources. Nonliving factors can include soil, flora, and fauna.
Depending on the type of natural resources, they can be classified into inexhaustible and renewable resources. Inexhaustible resources are available in abundance. Despite their availability, however, the rate of consumption outstrips the replenishment.
On the other hand, renewable resources can be replenished fairly easily. For instance, an open-pit diamond mine in Siberia is a potential resource.