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- Classification of Resources
- Biotic & Abiotic
- Renewable & Non-renewable
- Individual, Community, National & International
- Potential, Developed, Stock & Reserves
Resources can be classified in the following ways :
On the basis of origin :
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On the basis of exhaustility :
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On the basis of ownership :
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On the basis of status of development :
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Biotic & Abiotic Resources
Biotic Resources are obtained from biosphere and have life such as human beings, flora and fauna, fisheries, livestock etc.
Abiotic Resources are composed of non-living things, e.g., rocks and metals.
Renewable & Non-renewable Resources
Renewable Resources are renewable or replenishable resources which can be renewed or reproduced by physical, chemical or
mechanical processes, e.g., solar and wind energy, water, forests and wildlife, etc. Renewable resources may further be
• continuous or flow resources, e.g., wind, water
• biological resources, which are of 2 types :
− Natural Vegetation (Forests)
Non-Renewable Resources are formed over a substantially long geological time, e.g., minerals and fossil fuels. These can
• recyclable resources, e.g. metals,
• non-recyclable resources, e.g. fossil fuels, which cannot be recycled and get exhausted with their use
Individual, Community, National & International Resources
Individual Resources are resources that are owned privately by individuals, e.g.
• land owned by farmers (allotted by the government against the payment of revenue)
• platations, pasture lands, ponds, water in wells owned by individuals
• plots, houses and other property owned by people in the city
Community Resources are resources accessible to all the members of a community. Examples :
• Village commons (grazing grounds, burial grounds, village ponds, etc.)
• public parks, picnic spots, and playgrounds in urban areas
National Resources are all the reasources that belong to a nation. Examples :
• roads, canals, railways, etc.
• minerals, water resources, forests, wildlife, etc.
• land within the political boundaries,
• territorial water and the resources within
The term territorial water refers to the oceanic area upto 12 nautical miles (19.2 km) from the coast.
The country has legal powers to acquire even private property for public good. Urban Development Authorities get empowered by the government to acquire land
International Resources are regulated by certain international institutions. These include :
• the oceanic resources beyond 200 km of the Exclusive Economic Zone,
which belong to open ocean and no individual country can utilise these without the concurrence of international institutions.
India had to obtain the right to mine manganese nodules from the bed of the Indian Ocean from an area which lies beyond the exclusive economic zone.
Potential, developed, Stock & Reserves
Potential Resources are resources found in a region which have not been utilised. Examples :
• wind and solar energy development potential in the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan.
Developed Resources are resources that have been surveyed and determined for utilisation both qualitatively and quantitatively. The development of resources depends on technology and level of their feasibility.
Stock refers to materials in the environment which have the potential to satisfy human needs but human beings do not
have the appropriate technology to access these. Examples :
• water is a compound of two inflammable gases; hydrogen and oxygen, which could be used as a rich source of energy if we had the required technical ‘know-how’. Hence, it can be considered as stock.
Reserves are the subset of the stock, which are yet to be put into use with the help of existing technical ‘know-how’.
These can be used for meeting future requirements. Example :
• River water can be used for generating hydroelectric power but presently, it is being utilised only to a limited extent.
Thus, the water in the dams is a reserve which can be used in the future.