WebQuest

Natural Resources

Task

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  • Renewable Resources: water/watersheds, air, sunlight, animals, and plants.                         
  • Nonrenewable Resources: natural gas, soil, & sand and aggregates.
  • Watershed - An area of land where water flows to a single collection point. Water can flow off the land and into an ocean, bay, river, lake, stream, or pond.
  • Lakes have Painted turtles, Blue Gill fish, & the Cottonmouth snake as natural resources.
  • The Chesapeake Bay has Oysters, Great Blue Herons, & Blue Crabs.

    Land is one of three major factors of production in classical economics (along with labor and capital) and an essential input for housing and food production. Thus, land use is the backbone of agricultural economies and it provides substantial economic and social benefits. Land use change is necessary and essential for economic development and social progress.

    Land use change, however, does not come without costs. Conversion of farmland and forests to urban development reduces the amount of lands available for food and timber production. Soil erosion, salinization, desertification, and other soil degradations associated with intensive agriculture and deforestation reduce the quality of land resources and future agricultural productivity.

    Urbanization presents many challenges for farmers on the urban fringe. Conflicts with nonfarm neighbors and vandalism, such as destruction of crops and damage to farm equipment, are major concerns of farmers at the urban fringe. Neighboring farmers often cooperate in production activities, including equipment sharing, land renting, custom work, and irrigation system development. These benefits will disappear when neighboring farms are converted to development. Farmers may no longer be able to benefit from information sharing and formal and informal business relationships among neighboring farms. Urbanization may also cause the “impermanence syndrome” (i.e., a lack of confidence in the stability and long–run profitability of farming), leading to a reduction in investment in new technology or machinery, or idling of farmland.

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