Earth has renewable and nonrenewable resources. Our demand for and use of resources sometimes exceeds the supply that is available.
Nonrenewable resource: one that exists in a fixed amount, or is used up faster than it can be replaced in nature *Once these are used, most are immediately destroyed!
*Each U.S. citizen consumes about 40,000 pounds of new minerals each year!
What for?? Building materials for homes, cars, roads, appliances, computers; fertilizers on food we eat; electricity; etc…
*Most minerals come from the rocks in the ground.
Ore: a rock that contains enough of a desirable element to make separation profitable
Ex.- iron ore, copper ore
Ore mineral: the valuable mineral that can be separated from the rock
Ex.- iron, copper
Mineral reserve: the known deposits of mineral in ores that are worth mining
- The place where a mineral is found
*All minerals are nonrenewable, so, how long until we run out??
-Depends on two things:
1. the size of the reserve (How much there is!)
2. the rate at which we are using it up! (How fast we are using it!)
Resource Est. Life Exp. in Yrs. Uses .
Coal 200-300 (electricity)
Copper 36 (electric wiring)
Iron 62 (steel prod.)
Lead 25 (batteries)
Natural Gas 125 (fuel; heat)
Oil 50 (gasoline)
Silver 17 (electric wiring)
Tin 31 (cans; industry)
Uranium ??? (electricity)
*How do we recover these resources?
-Very harmful to the environment!! Destroys land, ecosystems; pollutes water sources, soil. . .
*Because these mineral resources are nonrenewable, we must plan for a day when they will disappear.
-What can we do?
1. find alternative resources
2. develop efficient and reliable renewable resources
3. reduce our use and avoid waste
4. reuse what we can
5. recycle (collect and reuse materials from waste) what we can
-Examples: hybrid/electric cars, carpool, walk/ride a bike, turn off unneeded lights/electrical appliances, don’t let H20 run, place recyclables in marked containers