Monday, May 9, 2011

The Conservation of Natural Resources

Alex Miller
English 151
Multimodal Essay
The Conservation of Natural Resources
The conservation of natural resources has been a growing concern throughout the years since global warming is increasing. The result is a severe climate change but there are ways to help this problem. There are opportunities to greatly reduce energy intensity through gains in efficiency. These gains could be made by both technological advances and price induced substitution (Reilly and Crimmins 28). Even though this is an important issue people are still careless with our environment and do not realize how important it is to take care of it. This might be because people do not really know what it is all about.

The Earth is not running out of fossil fuels but the continued reliance on fossil fuels is altering Earth’s energy balance. The risks of extreme temperature changes and subsequent impacts will grow substantially unless concrete actions are taken (Reilly and Crimmins). Fossil fuels are used for gas, airplane fuel, heating homes, electricity and cooking food (Fossil Fuels).

A big effect of global warming is the rise of sea levels and the fact that it will effect almost every species, both human and animal (Olmsted 46). This problem has resulted in people having to move to find food, shelter and water, all the things people need to survive (Olmsted 46). Scientist have concluded that the sea level will rise two meters by 2100 (Olmsted 46). Continued reliance on fossil fuels is altering Earth’s energy balance. The risks of extreme temperature changes and subsequent impacts will grow substantially unless concrete actions are taken (Reilly and Crimmins). 

People refer to what is happening to the Earth as the butterfly effect. The butterfly effect is the idea that even the smallest action can initiate a big change (Olmsted 42). Even just turning on a light bulb emits more carbon into the atmosphere adding to global warming (Olmsted 43). This is just one person but everyday billions of people in the world turn on a light bulb and that turn the little amount of carbon into a giant amount being released into the atmosphere. 

Water is a very important resource to mankind, we need it for survival. The Earth is covered by three-fourths water but only one percent of it is available for human use (Yeager).  This shows that we do not really have so much that we should be wasting it. The typical shower uses 10-25 gallons of water (Yeager). This is just for one person; imagine how much that is when everyone in the world is showering. There are water shortages throughout the world. Two thirds of the world’s population lives on less than 13 gallons of water per day when the average American uses about eight times that much (Water Conservation).

Recycling is a big part in conserving resources and could really help slow down or even stop the negative things happening to our environment. More and more people have started recycling but still not enough people are doing it. I think the reason most people don’t is because it may take more time than just throwing everything in a trash can where it is sent to a land fill. More places around the United States are providing people with recycling units. Colleges, for example, have started doing this and I think it is a step in the right direction to getting other people to join in on recycling. My roommate and I both recycle but other people I know at college don’t. Some of the reasons I have heard for choosing not to recycling is that “it doesn’t matter” and “nothing bad is going to happen if we keep doing things the way we always have.” Both of these statements are completely wrong. Recycling does matter and could have a huge impact on global warming. For the second reason I think I have provided more than enough information to prove this statement to be false.

One of my biggest concerns of people not recycling enough are plastic bottles. So many people use plastic water bottles and then just throw them away when they are done with them. Fifty-one billion plastic bottles go into landfills annually and it takes seven hundred years for a bottle to start to decompose (Foss Manufacturing Company, LLC). Fifty-one billion water bottles could wrap around the Earth five times (Foss Manufacturing Company, LLC).

To help conserve our Earth’s natural resources scientists have been trying to find alternatives. They have found alternative energy sources in using wind and solar power. Wind turbines are a possibility for alternative power but they are still trying to figure this out because wind isn’t very reliable (Reilly and Crimmins 26). Another that was discovered was the use of tequila for fuel (The Action Blog). Geyser power is a source of alternative engery that has become popular in Iceland but this source is geographically dependent since you need to be close to a geyser (A Guide to an Alternative Source of Energy). Geyser power is very economical and preferred over all alternative energy sources (A Guide to Alternative Sources of Energy). Nuclear power deals with the decomposition of atoms where the composed energy is turned into electricity (A Guide to Alternative Sources of Energy). Nuclear fusion is the opposite of this. It is the fusion of atoms and is safer than using nuclear power (A Guide to an Alternative Sources of Energy). Even though these alternatives have some disadvantages they are still better options because they are renewable and we don’t have to worry about running out (A Guide to Alternative Sources of Energy). 

To conserve paper you can do things online such as paying bills and sending e-mails (Conservation of Natural Resources). Turning off lights and other electronics will also conserve energy (Conservation of Natural Resources). Another way to help the environment is growing some of your own food. Its healthier for you and industrial farms use up to at least 30% more water than people who grow their own at home (Action Blog). You can even get Eco friendly clothes, shoes and jewelry now (Action Blog). They are made out of recycled and natural materials and are also chemical free (Cost Life).

I’m hoping that more people will start becoming more concerned with our planets future and make changes in what they do to help stop global warming. This is something that will effect everyone and even the small contributions will make a difference.

Works Cited

“A Guide to Alternative Sources of Energy.” Sourcing3 Buyer & Supplier Magazine. 06 May 2011. <>.

“Conservation of Natural Resources.” Natural Conservation. Land Conservancy, 01 March 2011. Web. 9 May 2011. <>.

“Ecospun is now Eco-fi.” Foss Manufacturing Company, LLC. Foss Manufacturing Company, LLC, n.d. Web. 9 May 2011.   <>.

“Fossil Fuels.” Fossil Fuels. Conservation: Protecting our Natural Resources, Web. 9 May 2011. <>.

"Green Living Made Cheap." The Action Blog. The Action Blog, 16 Mar 2011. Web. 9 May 2011. <>.

OLMSTED, JAMES L. “THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT: CONSERVATION EASEMENTS, CLIMATE CHANGE, AND INVASIVE SPECIES.” Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review 38.1(2011): 41-76. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. 9 May 2011.

REILLY, JOHN and ALLISON CRIMMINS. “MYTH v. FACT.” Mechanical Engineering 133.1 (2011): 24-29. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. 9 May 2011.

“Water Conservation.” What-When-How. Web. 9 May 2011. <>.

Yeager, Linda. “You can practice natural resource conservation just about anywhere.” Farm and Dairy. Farm and Dairy, 14 Arp 2011. Web. 9 May 2011. <>.


  1. Your blog was really informative. I especially liked that last part about the geyser power. I have never heard of that before but it sounded like it had a lot of potential.
    The research I did for my blog was somewhat along the same line as yours. I touched on global warming and a few of the sites i came across tried to accredit it to a natural fluctuation of the Earths climate. I personally don't buy into this at all. For as poorly as we treat our planet there has to be consequences and I think one of those is human caused global warming.
    I think maybe it could make your argument even more persuasive though if you touched on that and then gave a reason as to why you believe humans are causing the global warming.
    In all your blog is great and you did a great job stressing that we all can make a difference and that the time for change is now.

  2. Good essay. Your point is clear and straightforward. I had no clue that Americans did such a poor job recycling. Your argument was well written and I agree we need to do something about protecting our planet. The essay is well written and all of the links work but I think there could be more pictures. Overall a good essay.