Misuse of natural resources refers to excessive use, destructive use or achieving imbalance between resources either individually or in combination. Misuse of resources can also be direct or indirect. Direct misuse refers to such situations where the resource is directly destroyed or overused. But, many times, some resources are indirectly put to misuse.
Lack of knowledge of resource and its significance leads to its misuse. Lack of knowledge about natural resource may be even with educated people or uneducated people.
|Natural Resource||Types of misuse/ecological problems|
| I Ecological Resources||Excessive mining|
|Loss of forest area (if mines are in forest)|
|Displacement of population and their profession|
|Loss of agricultural lands (if resource is in cultivated land)|
|Dumping of ore or spent ore on surface leading to soil / water pollution|
|Risks and health hazards to employees / population|
|Directly contributing pollution to water / soil /air in petroleum exploration and processing industry|
| II Hydro ecological Resources ||Excessive, unscientific and uneconomic ground water exploitation|
|Exploration of underground water without any regard to its rate of rechange|
|Displacement of human settlement during establishment of hydro-projects|
|Loss of agricultural / forest area in standing water (in dam construction)|
|Unscientific use / overuse of irrigation water leading to loss of fertility, increased pollution of land / water|
|Loss of biodiversity|
| III Atmospheric Resources ||Destructive use of atmospheric oxygen to burn carbon sources to produce CO and CO2 which in turn change the composition of air|
|Deforestation on one side and polluting the atmosphere by CO2 loading on other side have led to increased CO2 levels in atmosphere|
|Ozone coverage is slowly degenerating due to release of chlorine generating gases to atmosphere|
| IV Edaphic resources||Excessive pressure of population of land has led to intensive cultivation of land, without allowing the soil to have its natural organic process of recuperating biological potentiality|
|Addition of chemicals on continuous basis (as fertilizers and pesticides) has destroyed ecological balance in soil|
|Indiscriminate irrigation has led to salinity / availability of soil rendering them unfit for cultivation|
| V Forest resources ||Continuous deforestation for commercial and fuel purposes|
|Encroachment of forest area for agriculture,mining, industrial purposes|
|Loss of forest area for irrigation dams|
|Loss of biodiversity due to encouragement /discouragement of specific species of plants|
| VI Crop resources ||Unnatural crosses between species|
|Transgenic breeding leading to modification of original characters of plants to destroy natural plant types interfering in natural regeneration process|
|Tissue culture aided cloning|
| VII Aquatic resources ||Excessive fishing around the coast|
|Loss of biodiversity in aquatic population|
|Premature fishing for commercial purpose|
|Destruction of herbivorous fishes by carnivorous fishes|
| VIII Animal resources ||Interference in natural breeding by in-vitro fertilization and artificial insemination technique|
|Severe damage to community living in animals due to forced solitary rearing|
|Hormonal regulation of physiology of animals|
|Cloning of animals|
| IX Wildlife resources ||Keeping the animals in captivity to derive entertainment value from them|
|Killing the wild animals for pleasure (hunting) or for trading or for food|
|Ignoring the ecobalance and biodiversity and failure to preserve them|
| X Human resources ||Discriminating the human beings on sex|
|Abuse of children as cheap source of labour|
|XI Microbial resources||Biological wars and its agents like Anthrax|
b) Ignorance on necessity to preserve natural resources.c) Deliberate negligence on destruction of natural resource.
d) Entertainment / recreational / aesthetic interest.e) Extreme population pressure.
f) Self interest of human beings over the interest to retain natural resources.g) International trade and commitments.
h) Misuse of legislation.i) Loop holes of provisions of law.
j) Protracted legal process.k) Food interest
l) Luxuries required for man.m) Increased industrial requirement.
n) Improvement of standard of living, GDP, per capita income and purchasing power.o) Expectations of instantaneous returns.