Are there any natural resources that man has completely used up?



  1. 0 Votes

    No. But most things, from fresh water to gold to helium to neodymium are becoming harder to find and produce.

  2. 0 Votes

    Adding to Mr. Gibson’s answer, I’d say the highest concern is fresh water. Populations increase and the requirements for water increase in turn. There isn’t technology available to desalinize ocean water to the extent necessary either, so conserving supplies of fresh water is extremely important. Equally worrisome is the problems in irrigation (which comprises a significant percentage of the world’s water usage): “The problem is compounded by inefficient use of water, with an estimated 60% loss through seepage and evaporation from delivery channels and bare soil between crop rows.”

  3. 0 Votes

    It depends which scale the question refers to – on a worldwide scale, it would be practically impossible to identify a natural resource that has been completely used or contaminated other than the worldwide extinction of certain species.

    But for a community or region, yes – there are resources that have been completely used or destroyed. In many places where there was fossil fuel, all the accessible oil has been sucked dry; elsewhere, groundwater has been contaminated to such a degree to make it unusable for many generations; the soil depletion that led to the infamous dustbowl was the loss of arable soil, though it has since been reversed; and anywhere a species goes extinct, it is a loss of a resource.

  4. 0 Votes

    I’d consider extinct species a form of natural resources that man has used up since man no longer has access to the uses of those species.

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