What is Difference Between Renewable And Non-Renewable Resources

Natural resources are of great importance to humans and other creatures. In general terms, they are categorized into two groups: renewable and non-renewable. 

All resources, both renewable and non-renewable, are especially used by people and if one day they were missing, our life would probably not be as comfortable as it can be while we use them. Hence the need for them not to be misused or wasted.

Difference Between Renewable And Non-Renewable Resources


Renewable resources are those that never run out since they can be restored through natural processes; at a faster rate than they are consumed. For example, trees are renewable; because even if you cut them, they can easily grow back.

Air, water, animals … are also renewable resources. Of these, the first two are renewed by cycles. But something very important to take into account is that although they are renewed we cannot exceed their use, they must be handled with care so that we do not spend them at a faster rate than they are renewed and we must face a shortage of them.

In other words, renewable resources can be replaced; s however, if the consumption rate becomes greater than the rate of renewal, sustainability will be affected.

Just as there are resources, there are also renewable energies; Some examples that many of us know and that we can mention are solar, wind, hydroelectric power; among others.

Simply put, renewable resources are all those that can be renewed or replaced by nature or human activity itself.


On the other hand, non-renewable resources include fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas. There will come a time when these resources will be completely depleted after being used.

These resources come directly from the earth. They are usually divided into two groups: fossil fuels and nuclear fuels. Those that are included among the fossils are already mentioned above, but among the nuclear ones are those that have to do with mining or refining minerals such as uranium.

Nuclear fuels are considered the best and cleanest of non-renewable resources. Fossil fuels can take millions of years to re-form.

Non-renewable resources have a fixed amount and are consumed before being replaced or made by nature. This is the main feature that differentiates them from renewables.

In conclusion, much emphasis is currently being placed on the reuse and recycling of resources; to guarantee their availability for as long as possible.

Generally, renewable resources are clean and cheap (although at the beginning it takes a lot of money to exploit them); Therefore, very good to handle and do not cause damage to the environment. But non-renewable resources, although they are known for their efficiency; they are capable of producing a large amount of energy in a short time, they can be more expensive in the long run and cause some environmental damage.

Among the disadvantages of renewable resources can be mentioned that they are not as efficient as non-renewable resources in the context of energy production, and are too expensive at first.

On the other hand, the greatest disadvantage of non-renewable resources seems obvious (they are not renewed) and eventually they run out; They are also not very clean and bring many dangers to the environment.

It is important to mention that 95% of the energy in the world derives from non-renewable resources.

Key differences between renewable and non-renewable resources

  • Renewable resources can be replaced or reused, therefore, they do not disappear; while non-renewable can not be replaced and eventually run out.
  • Examples of renewable resources: water, crops, wind energy, geothermal energy, air, and solar energy.
  • Examples of non-renewable resources: coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear fuels.

Advantages of renewable resources

  • Clean.
  • Operating costs are low.
  • They are available in abundant quantities.

Advantages of non-renewable resources

  • They are relatively cheap.
  • Very efficient
  • They produce a lot of energy in a short time.

Disadvantages of renewable resources

  • They are not very efficient in the mass production of energy.
  • They are excessively expensive at first. (At the time of exploiting them).
  • They can be loud.

Disadvantages of non-renewable resources

  • In the end, they will disappear.
  • They are not clean.
  • They threaten the environment.

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