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Renewable Resources

( Article Type: Explanation )

These are environmental resources that are continuously renewing themselves. For example, energy that is harnessed from the sun, wind and waves is renewable. Trees, soil and water are renewable but only in the long term and only if careful plans are laid for sustainable use and replanting. Soil that is washed away by erosion will take thousands of years to regenerate but if it is conserved, it can be productive for centuries. Therefore, renewable resources need to be conserved and used wisely in order to be truly sustainable.

An underlying principle to understanding renewable resources is the recognition that all resources, irrespective of whether they are renewable or non-renewable, must be utilised in a manner that will stretch and extend their usefulness either through conservation or through better and more efficient use. For example, a solvent was used to clean contaminants from machinery. The supplier indicated that once used, the solvent should be disposed of. Some years later, an adviser saw this practice and suggested that the users filter the solvent through a fine gauze filter and try reusing the solvent. The contaminants were filtered out and the solvent was able to be re-used many, many times over.