It takes thousands or even millions of years for most

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- it takes thousands or even millions of years for most mineral deposits to form so the only way of increasing the stock of mineral reserves is by finding new deposits. - therefore, conservation strategies are important. - examples include oil, natural gas, coal and various minerals such as nickel, gold, copper, iron ore, uranium, and so on - these resources often relate to power/fuel sources and are used in the construction and processing of many items iii) Flow resources - flow resources ‘move’; such as running water, wind and solar rays. - typically these resources do not become exhausted, but usually have to be ‘harnessed’ for human use. - in addition to being fundamentally crucial to life on earth (water, insolation), flow resources perform a variety of functions and are becoming more commonly associated with sources of power - humans put great importance on natural resources. 4
- as such, the spatial distribution of natural resources has important influence on the pattern of international economic activity and development. - countries of the world can be classified into one of four types based on natural resource-population-technology characteristics. i) High endowment per capita, high technology type - these countries are denoted by relatively low populations relative to abundant natural resource endowment. - or, high natural resource endowment per capita. - and these countries have the technological knowhow to benefit from resources. - any country in this classification is in a good position in terms of natural resource exploitation - an elevated level of economic well-being is typically the result - Canada, US, Australia and Russia are examples ii) Low endowment per capita, high technology type - this describes areas of the world that tend to be technologically advanced, but have high populations relative to natural resource endowment. - these countries will be very involved in securing resources from abroad (through trade and foreign direct investment) to overcome resource shortages. - these countries are comparatively well off because innovative technologies and strategies are developed to wisely use scarce resources 5
- good example occur in much of Europe and also Japan and Singapore - recently also China and India iii) High endowment per capita, limited technology type - this category describes countries with high natural resources per capita, but with a general lack of technological capacities. - particularly, widely-distributed technologies. - usually these areas are less politically-stable as well. - there is often an ‘upper class’ that is very well off because of the country’s natural resource wealth. - but, a high percentage of people in these countries are usually quite poor. - yet if technological levels increase and/or more effective governing practices occur, there is potential for wider distribution of wealth.

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