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For other uses, see Depletion (disambiguation).

Resource depletion is the consumption of a resource faster than it can be replenished. Resources are commonly divided between renewable resources and non-renewable resources. (See also Mineral resource classification.) Use of either of these forms of resources beyond their rate of replacement is considered to be resource depletion.

Resource depletion is most commonly used in reference to farming, fishing, mining, water, and fossil fuels.[1]

Causes[edit]

Minerals[edit]

Minerals are needed to provide food, clothing, and housing. A USGS study found a significant long-term trend over the 20th century for nonrenewable resources such as minerals to supply a greater proportion of the raw material inputs to the non-fuel, non-food sector of the economy; an example is the greater consumption of crushed stone, sand, and gravel used in construction.[2]

Large-scale exploitation of minerals began in the Industrial Revolution around 1760 in England and has grown rapidly ever since. Most of the world's mineral ores are still being extracted from mines over fifty years old. Miners cope by digging deeper, accepting lower grades of ore, and using technology to extract the minerals. Virtually all basic industrial metals (copper, iron, bauxite, etc.), as well as rare earth minerals, are facing output limitations.[3]

Minerals projected to enter production decline during the next 20 years:

Minerals projected to enter production decline during the present century:

  • Coal? (2030-2060) 2060 [7]
  • Iron (2068)[8]
  • Aluminium (2057)[9]

Oil[edit]

Main articles: Oil depletion and Peak oil

Peak oil is the period when the maximum rate of global petroleum extraction is reached, after which the rate of production enters terminal decline. It relates to a long-term decline in the available supply of petroleum. This, combined with increasing demand, will significantly increase the worldwide prices of petroleum derived products. Most significant will be the availability and price of liquid fuel for transportation.

The US Department of Energy in the Hirsch report indicates that “The problems associated with world oil production peaking will not be temporary, and past “energy crisis” experience will provide relatively little guidance.”[10]

Deforestation[edit]

Deforestation is the clearing of natural forests by logging or burning of trees and plants in a forested area. As a result of deforestation, presently about one half of the forests that once covered the Earth have been destroyed.[11] It occurs for many different reasons, and it has several negative implications on the atmosphere and the quality of the land in and surrounding the forest.

Causes[edit]

One of the main causes of deforestation is clearing forests for agricultural reasons. As the population of developing areas, especially near rainforests, increases, the need for land for farming becomes more and more important.[12] For most people, a forest has no value when its resources aren’t being used, so the incentives to deforest these areas outweigh the incentives to preserve the forests. For this reason, the economic value of the forests is very important for developing worlds.[13]

Environmental impact[edit]

Because deforestation is so extensive, it has made several significant impacts on the environment, including carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, changing the water cycle, an increase in soil erosion, and a decrease in biodiversity. Deforestation is often cited as a cause of global warming. Because trees and plants remove carbon dioxide and emit oxygen into the atmosphere, the reduction of forests contribute to about 12% of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions.[14] One of the most pressing issues that deforestation creates is soil erosion. The removal of trees causes higher rates of erosion, increasing risks of landslides, which is a direct threat to many people living close to deforested areas. As forests get destroyed, so does the habitat for millions of animals. It is estimated that 80% of the world’s known biodiversity lives in the rainforests, and the destruction of these rainforests is accelerating extinction at an alarming rate.[15]

Controlling deforestation[edit]

The United Nations and the World Bank created programs such as Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD), which works especially with developing countries to use subsidies or other incentives to encourage citizens to use the forest in a more sustainable way.[16] In addition to making sure that emissions from deforestation are kept to a minimum, an effort to educate people on sustainability and helping them to focus on the long-term risks is key to the success of these programs.[17] Reforestation is also being encouraged in many countries in an attempt to repair the damage that deforestation has done.[18]

Wetlands[edit]

Wetlands are areas that are often saturated by enough surface or groundwater to sustain vegetation that is usually adapted to saturated soil conditions, such as cattails, bulrushes, red maples, wild rice, blackberries, cranberries, and peat moss. Because some varieties of wetlands are rich in minerals and nutrients and provide many of the advantages of both land and water environments they contain diverse species and possibly even form a food chain. When human activities take away resources many species are affected. An ecosystem contains many species.

Years ago people assumed wetlands were useless so it was not a large concern when they were being dug up. Many people want to use them for developing homes etc. On the other side of the argument people believe the wetlands are a vital source for other life forms and a part of the life cycle.

Wetlands provide services for:

  1. Food and habitat
  2. Improving water quality
  3. Commercial fishing
  4. Floodwater reduction
  5. Shoreline stabilization
  6. Recreation

Some loss of wetlands resulted from natural causes such as erosion, sedimentation (the buildup of soil by the settling of fine particles over a long period of time), subsidence (the sinking of land because of diminishing underground water supplies), and a rise in the sea level. However, 95% of the losses since the 1970s have been caused by humans, especially by the conversion of wetlands to agricultural land.[citation needed] More than half (56%) the losses of coastal wetlands resulted from dredging for marinas, canals, port development, and, to some extent, from natural shoreline erosion. The conversion of wetlands causes the loss of natural pollutant sinks. The dramatic decline in wetlands globally suggests not only loss of habitat but also diminished water quality.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.libraryindex.com/pages/103/Depletion-Conservation-Natural-Resources.html
  2. ^ Materials Flow and Sustainability, US Geological Survey, Fact Sheet FS-068-98, June 1998.
  3. ^ Klare, M. T. (2012). The Race for What’s Left. Metropolitan Books. ISBN 9781250023971. 
  4. ^ Valero & Valero(2010)による『Physical geonomics: Combining the exergy and Hubbert peak analysis for predicting mineral resources depletion』から
  5. ^ http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921344910000510 Physical geonomics: Combining the exergy and Hubbert peak analysis for predicting mineral resources depletion
  6. ^ http://www.roperld.com/science/minerals/zinc.htm
  7. ^ http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921344910000510 Physical geonomics: Combining the exergy and Hubbert peak analysis for predicting mineral resources depletion
  8. ^ http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921344910000510 Physical geonomics: Combining the exergy and Hubbert peak analysis for predicting mineral resources depletion
  9. ^ http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921344910000510 Physical geonomics: Combining the exergy and Hubbert peak analysis for predicting mineral resources depletion
  10. ^ DOE Hirsch Report
  11. ^ “Global Deforestation". Global Change Curriculum. University of Michigan Global Change Program. January 4, 2006
  12. ^ Butler, Rhett A. "Impact of Population and Poverty on Rainforests". Mongabay.com / A Place Out of Time: Tropical Rainforests and the Perils They Face. Retrieved May 13, 2009.
  13. ^ Pearce, David W (December 2001). "The Economic Value of Forest Ecosystems". Ecosystem Health, Vol. 7, no. 4. pp. 284–296.
  14. ^ G.R.van der Werf, D.C. Morton, R.S. DeFries, J.G.J. Olivier, P.S. Kasibhatla, R.B. Jackson, G.J. Collatz and J.T. Randerson, CO2 emissions from forest loss, Nature Geoscience, Volume 2 (November 2009) pp. 737–738
  15. ^ http://www.actionbioscience.org/environment/nilsson.html Do We Have Enough Forests? By Sten Nilsson
  16. ^ "Copenhagen Accord of 18 December 2009". UNFCC. 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-28.
  17. ^ Diamond, Jared Collapse: How Societies Choose To Fail or Succeed; Viking Press 2004, pages 301–302
  18. ^ Jonathan A Foley, Ruth DeFries, Gregory P Asner, Carol Barford, et al. 2005 "Global Consequences of Land Use" Science 309:5734 570-574

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Resource_depletion — Please support Wikipedia.
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138 news items

 
Charleston Post Courier
Sun, 19 Oct 2014 21:07:30 -0700

7 p.m. 5 Liberty St., Charleston. Scheduled speaker is Chris Martenson, an economic researcher and futurist specializing in energy and resource depletion and co-founder of PeakProsperity.com. He will discuss what he sees as America's gradual decline ...
 
Grand Island Independent
Sun, 19 Oct 2014 22:03:45 -0700

University of Nebraska-Lincoln students recently had the opportunity to learn about one of the most pressing global challenges their generation will be charged with solving — world hunger — when the HungerU Tour came to campus. Hunger and ...
 
Thomson Reuters Foundation
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 06:18:45 -0700

Given climate change, resource depletion and our renewed focus on the importance of nutrition, we need to be as sustainable as we are productive, generating more resilient food systems that produce more with less impact on the environment.

Regina Leader-Post

Regina Leader-Post
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 06:41:15 -0700

... was working on the Human Factor section in the Life Sciences Gallery - an exhibit that examines the role of human activity in areas affecting sustainability, such as climate change, overpopulation, poverty and disease, pollution and resource depletion.
 
IISD Reporting Services
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 10:15:00 -0700

The report also recognizes family farmers' vulnerability to climate change and resource depletion. It describes, for instance, climate-induced threats to agriculture, including increases in temperatures, water shortages, diseases and pests and extreme ...

Live Trading News

fnbnews.com
Fri, 17 Oct 2014 19:37:30 -0700

About 90 per cent of the world's 570 million farms are managed by families, making family farms the predominant forms of agriculture, and consequently, potentially crucial agents of change in achieving sustainable food security and in eradicating ...
 
Deccan Herald
Mon, 29 Sep 2014 14:06:03 -0700

The paper, published by a group of University of California, Berkeley researchers, examines the connection between resource depletion and its unexpected social consequences. Although it can be difficult to pin down a direct causal link between these ...

Grist

Grist
Tue, 14 Oct 2014 10:15:00 -0700

Climate change, energy resource depletion, and airborne particulate matter are the biggest “external” expenses calculated, but the study also includes monetary estimates for impacts like human toxicity, radiation, water depletion, even using land that ...
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