How can resources be defined and classified? FLASHCARDS NEEDED

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  • Created by: StevenFox
  • Created on: 01-04-16 13:03

How can resources be defined and classified?

Resource = Any aspect of the environment which can be used to meet human needs


Natural = naturally occuring substances which have value by humans, eg. oil, fish forests

Human = number of people and their skills and abilities


Non-Renewables: Take millions of years to form and therefore, within the Human timeframe, there is a finite amount available which can be over exploited

Renewables/Flow resources: Dont need regeneration and in constant supply - eg wind, solar, tidal energy. Due to technoglogy, such resources arnt used to their full potential but will inevitably be overcome due to the lack of finite resources left

Semi-Renewable: Resources which are considered renewable as they can regenerate in a human time frame - eg Forests. However, can be lost if over exploited. Another example is Fishing, whereby years ago they would have been considered renewable, but due to the threa of overfishing, have to be protected to avoid extinction.

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How can resources be defined and classified? #2

Definition by source:

  • Point resources = very geographically located concentrations, eg. iron and gold
  • Diffuse resources = occur on a much wider scale, eg. gravel and sand
  • Domestic v imports 
  • scarce v ubiquitous

Changes in technology:

  • Discovery: Urainium, before the 18th century, was used for staining glass. However, with thanks to technological advancements, it is used as an almost limtless source of energy
  • Ability to exploit: With changes in tehnology, able to exploit far-flung deposits of resources such as offshore oil fields
  • Manufactoring: Food has changed significantly as a result of technology. With advances in agriculture and manufactoring, food as become a resource for pleasure rather than survival - especially in western cultures. Whilst, in places like Saharan Africa, the aim of society is to get this food to survive
  • Recycling: As a result of recycling advancements, basic materials which we once considered waste has now become its own form of resource. Used plastic bottles, mobile phones etc.
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How can resources be defined and classified? #3

Changes in society:

As a result of changing attidutes and education towards the world around us, scenery itself has become a resource to be exploited. Promoting industy such as tourism to a region which originally did not posses many conventional resources, eg. Switzerland

As a result of population size, Land itself has become a resource to be highly contested, eg. Japan

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