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Non-Renewable Resources

( Article Type: Explanation )

Non-renewable resources are environmental resources that cannot be replenished. Once they have been used up, there will be no more.


  • Most non-renewable resources are minerals, which are mined, for example, gold, iron ore, titanium.
  • Coal and oil are known as fossil fuels and are also non-renewable. 
  • Some scientists have suggested that the earth has only 200 years of exploitable oil reserves left at current consumption level. 


Besides being significant sources of pollution, these fuels will not last for ever and alternative energy sources need to be found.


The principles behind sustainable development seek to stretch the availability of non-renewable resources by finding sustainable replacements, and reducing existing usage.

Solar energy poses potential solutions to many problems relating to the use of non-renewable resources. Photo-voltaic cells technology has advanced substantially and conversion of the sun’s rays to electricity is commonplace.