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The Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies, Natural Resources

Every aspect of an organism's environment is examined in environmental studies.

The Multidisciplinary Nature of Environment Studies

Every aspect of an organism's environment is examined in environmental studies. It is a multidisciplinary approach that promotes an understanding of nature and the impact of humans on it. Applied science is concerned with identifying practical ways to make human civilization sustainable within the earth's finite resources.

Scope

As we look around our environment, we notice that it was previously a natural landscape such as a a desert, forest, a mountain, or a river a combination of these elements. Our lives are largely shaped by what humans have done to the landscape, be it in villages, towns, or cities. Even city dwellers get their food from nearby villages, and these are dependent on natural landscapes for resources such as water for fuel wood, agriculture, fodder, and fish from lakes, rivers, and seashores. Our daily activities are therefore connected to our external environment and have an impact on it. Our daily lives are incomplete without drinking water.

The air we breathe, the food we eat, and the plants and animals that make up the web of life, are all dependent on the web of life that we are also part of. In order to maintain our lives, we must maintain the vital systems of our environment. Without protecting the planet's environmental resources, we cannot continue to live. Since most traditional societies respect nature for their livelihood, they refer to Mother Nature as 'Mother Nature'. Cultural practices contributed to the conservation of natural resources in traditional societies. The Indian culture has had a long tradition of respecting nature and all living things. All of its traditions are based on these values. A fourth century BC edict of Emperor Ashoka declared life to be important for our well-being.

Importance

The environment encompasses many facets. There are several subject areas that fall under its umbrella, including social studies and science. Our environment is complex, involving economics, biology, physics, chemistry, geography, and resource management. In other words, environmental studies are extremely wide-ranging, and they include the majority of major disciplines. Nature has a finite supply of resources. Our lives depend on a variety of elements, such as water, air, soil, minerals, oil, and the products we get from forests, grasslands, and oceans, as well as agricultural and livestock production. They are essential for life to exist. The earth's resource base will shrink as our number increases and the amounts of resources we use also increase.

Our growth in resource consumption cannot be sustained. Misuse of resources makes matters worse. The amount of water we waste or pollute varies greatly; the amount of plastic we create increases, which we discard after use; and the amount of food we waste is enormous, due to the discarding of it as garbage. As a result of manufacturing processes, solid wastes are created as a byproduct, as well as chemicals that contaminate liquid wastes and air, as well as gases that contaminate water. Nature cannot manage the rising amounts of waste. The accumulation of these substances in our environment is causing a variety of diseases and other harmful effects now seriously affecting our daily lives. Many pollutants are known to cause cancer, including air pollution, water pollution, and pesticides.

Natural Resources

Humans do not intervene in the development of these resources, which are found naturally and are developed through nature. Among natural resources we have air, animals, sunlight, water, stones, soil, plants, and fossil fuels. A natural resource is an element derived from nature that is useful to man or may be useful to man depending on technological, economic, or social circumstances. Natural resources include food, building materials, fabric, metals, water, and geothermal energy. The natural sciences have long been associated with natural resources.

Based on their availability, natural resources can be divided into two categories:
  • Renewable resources - Those kinds of resources are available in infinite quantities and can be used repeatedly.
  • Non-renewable resources - Non-renewable resources are those whose abundance is limited or likely to diminish due to their non-renewability.
In terms of importance, five resources stand out:
  • Forests - As the population grows, construction projects and housing demand also increase. Furthermore, forests protect the Earth's eco-systems as well as providing clean air.
  • Air - The air we breathe is crucial for the survival of all plants, animals, and humans on this planet. Reducing air pollution is therefore a priority.
  • Soil - Particles and nutrients make up soil. Soil supports plant growth.
  • Iron - Silica is a substance that is used to make iron. Iron can be used to make weapons, transportation and buildings.
  • Water - 70 percent of Earth's surface is covered with water, but only 2 percent of that is fresh water. Efforts should be made to educate consumers and regulate how water is used.
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Ankur Choudhary is India's first professional pharmaceutical blogger, author and founder of Pharmaceutical Guidelines, a widely-read pharmaceutical blog since 2008. Sign-up for the free email updates for your daily dose of pharmaceutical tips.
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