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natural resource

any useful material found in the environment.

raw material

a resource or material that is still in its natural state, before being processed or manufactured into a useful product.

recyclable resource

a resource that cycles through natural processes in the environment; water, nitrogen, and carbon are recyclable resources.

renewable resource

a natural resource that the environment continues to supply or replace as it is used; trees, water, and wind are renewable resources.

nonrenewable resource

a resource that cannot be replaced once its used; nonrenewable resources include fossil fuels such as coal and oil, and minerals such as iron, copper, and gold.

fossil fuel

anyone of several nonrenewable resources such as coal, oil, or natural gas, created from the remains of plants and animals.


the process of turning raw materials into a finished product.

developed nation

A country with a modern industrial society and a well developed economy.

developing nation

a country with relatively low industrial production, often lacking modern technology.

commercial farming

farming that is done by companies; commercial farms are large and use modern technology; also, the raising of crops and livestock for sale in outside markets.

subsistence farming

farming that provides only enough food and animals for the needs of a family or village.


a large estate, usually in a warm climate, on which crops are grown by workers living there; plantations usually raise a single crop for export.

foreign aid

economic and military aid to another country.


a community of living things and their environment; the elements of an ecosystem interact with one another.


the process of clearing land of forests or trees, usually to make room for farms and homes.

acid rain

rain whose high levels of chemicals can pollute or damage the environment; usually caused by pollutants from the burning of fossil fuels.

ozone layer

the layer of gas in the upper part of the atmosphere that blocks out most of the sun's harmful ultraviolet rays.

global warming

a slow increase in Earth's temperature due to the increasing amount of much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, more heat than normal is trapped and temperatures around the world increase.


to reuse materials to make new products.

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