Natural resources refer to such type of resources that exist naturally in the earth without any human effort. They are like water, atmosphere, soil, sunlight, natural forest, and minerals. These natural resources are the main source of the human life exists in the Earth. But, in this article, we are going to discuss the natural resources of Nepal.
Nepal is a landlocked country in between two big giant countries, China to the north and India to the East, west, and south. It lies in South East Asia with an area of 147181 sqm. km.Let us discuss the natural resources of Nepal.
Major Natural Resources of Nepal
1. Forest – Major Natural Resources of Nepal
Forest is one of the major natural resources of Nepal. About 25.4% of Nepal’s land is covered by forest. This figure is according to FAO in 2005. Nepal’s forest has been classified as protected, conserved and production forest. Forest is the main source of firewood in Nepal. Similarly, paper, furniture and timber industry are dependent on the forest. Many medicinal herbs are available in the forest. It is also the home of the different animals and birds. Forest, in fact, supports the whole life cycle of the environment.
There are many forest conservation areas in Nepal which have been the home to many animals, birds, and vegetation. It has added beauty to our country since many tourists come to visit this lovely forest. Similarly, it has also been helpful in controlling the landslides and soil erosion in the Hilly and Terai areas of Nepal. But in some couple of years, deforestation rate is so high that we are losing our natural forest. This is the reason that the temperature of the major cities of Nepal has increased and it also leads to the natural calamities. We should protect our natural forest so that we can live a healthy life.
See also: Forest in Nepal
2. Soil/Land- Major Natural Resources of Nepal
Nepal occupies only 0.1 percentage of the total land of the world. Its total area is 147,181 sq. Km. It is divided into three parts – Terai, Hilly, and Himalayan. The soil is one of the most important parts of Nepal as most of the Nepalese still are depended on agriculture and farming. Only 17% of total land is cultivable which is in Terai and Hilly while 38% of the land is rocky, Mountains and snow filled that is in Himalayan. So, people of Terai and Hilly are dependent upon agriculture.
Terai land is more fertile. So, agriculture is more productive in Terai, It is also called the green belt of Nepal since most of the agricultural products are cultivated in Terai and exported to Hilly and Himalayas. They cultivate rice, wheat, jute, paddy, tobacco, sugarcane, oilseed, potatoes, coconut, maize etc. Similarly, in hilly areas, rice, paddy, potatoes, wheat, maize are grown. Himalayan areas are not good for agriculture, however, there are large medicinal herbs available in the Himalayan forest.
Various type of soil is available in Nepal. They are like alluvial soil, rocky soil, sandy soil, lacustrine soil and mountain soil.
Don’t Miss: Soil and Land in Nepal
3. Water- Major Natural Resources of Nepal
Water is one of the major natural resources of Nepal. In fact, it is the second richest country in water resources after Brazil. There are many sources of water, especially like mountains, glaciers, and snow. Since Nepal is a landlocked country, it has no any sources of water from sea or oceans. However, nature has provided abundance sources of water. There are many large rivers like Karnali, Seti, Koshi, Gandaki, Bhotekoshi, Sunkoshi and many small ponds, waterfalls and small streams. There are also many lakes like Rara, Phewa, Tilicho, Shey pho ks undo lakes which are also the sources of water.
Water has been used especially in the generation of electricity, irrigation projects, drinking and household works. But still, the people of Nepal are not able to get adequate water resources. The capital city Kathmandu is still scarce of water and electricity. However, in the present days, there has been no lack of electricity but if the hydroelectricity projects are not completed in time, it is sure to face major load shedding in the coming days. The on-goingMelamchi project is also set to quench the thrust of people of Kathmandu soon. Hope, our government will properly utilize the water resources of our country.
See Also: Drinking Water in Nepal
4. Minerals- Major Natural Resources of Nepal
More than 80% of the land in Nepal is Mountainous. It has been researched that there are various minerals resources like metallic, non-metallic, decorative stones, fuel metals in the mountainous region. Similarly, minerals like gold, mica, limestone, and iron ore, copper are found in various parts of Nepal. It is even researched that Nepal has petroleum resources at Nepalgunj, Pyuthan, Dailekh. Limestone found in Hetauda, Chovar, Surkhet has been used for the cement production by the major cement factories. Kathmandu valley, Mustang and few others districts of Nepal are supposed to be the major sources of natural gasses but they are not confirmed yet.
Due to the lack of well-skilled technology and the manpower, Nepal is not able to extract the minerals. If Nepal government gives priority to the mining industries, then there will establish a large number of mining industries in Nepal that can generate employment opportunities and the people of Nepal should not have to go abroad for works. Even the international companies are interested in establishing such industries but due to the lack of proper rules and regulations and uncertain government, they are not getting the good environment to invest.
don’t miss: Minerals and mines in Nepal
These are the major the natural resources of Nepal. Our country is rich in natural resources but we are not able to utilize it. We are the second richest country in water but we lack adequate drinking water. We lack the electricity as many rivers are flowing freely through which we can generate thousands of electricity. We have the natural vegetation but we lack the medicinal industries. We have many minerals resources but we have to export from next countries since we have no any mining industries. We have the most cultivable land in Terai but we have to export foods from India.
This is all due to the lack of proper utilization of our natural resources. Until we don’t utilize it, the economy of our country will not rise.
Related terms and posts about natural resources in Nepal
Major Natural Resources of Nepal