Check out the list of UK natural resources, location found and usefulness. The United Kingdom (UK) is situated off the northwest coast of Europe, and it is an island nation. The other parts of the country are bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, the Celtic Ocean, the English Channel, and the North Sea, while the UK is being bordered by the Republic of Ireland. The country is ranked the 12th with the longest coastline. The UK covers a land area of 93,600 square miles, hence, the country is the world’s 78th largest country by area, and is ranked the 22nd with the highest population of 66 million people as of 2017. The country is endowed with numerous natural resources which include; the arable land, petroleum, coal, and other minerals such as lead, zinc, salt, iron ore, limestone, clay, potash gypsum, silica and chalk among others. 

UK Natural Resources

  The United Kingdom emerged as a military victor from World War II, but not without a weakened manufacturing sector. The country has a trading economy that is developed, fiercely independent, and international at the leading position of the 19th-century industrial revolution. Their after-war recovery was relatively slow. It took nearly 40 years plus additional stimulation from members in the European Economic Community for the economy of Britain to significantly improve its competitiveness. The United Kingdom is a highly developed country in Europe. The popular industrial revolution began in the country and the incipient industry that was first introduced was the textile followed by the shipbuilding industries, coal mining industries, and steel making industries among others.

The United Kingdom is presently Europe’s second-largest economy and the world’s 5th largest economy. 29 percent of the GDP is accounted for by the private service sector. The capital city, London, is one of the three leading centers of the global economy, the others being Tokyo and New York. A critical role is played by tourism in the economy of the country, and more than 27 million visitors arrived in the UK in 2004. The country was ranked as the major tourist destination in the world, and the highest international visitor arrivals in the world were in London. 

List Of UK Natural Resources And Their Uses

  • 1. Arable Land

About 69 percent of the total land area in the UK is utilized for agriculture. 476,000 people or 1.5 percent of the labor force in the country are engaged in agriculture and it’s related activities. Not more than 60 percent of the food consumed is produced in the country, and it is mostly in rural parts of the East Anglia. Most crops are cultivated in the East Anglia while livestock is majorly produced in the southwest part of the country. The farms in the UK are about 212,000 and they vary in size from less than 20 hectares to more than 100 hectares. Despite the country’s fertile soils, skilled farmers, subsidies from the government, and sophisticated technology, farm earnings in the country are still relatively low. Young people have been discouraged from joining the farming industry as a result of the low earnings, exorbitantly high prices of land, and shortage of farms for leasing, hence, the average farmer’s age in the country is 59 years. 

Some of the plants grown in the country include; wheat, oats, potatoes, sugar beets, barley, vegetables, and fruits. The largest agricultural crop cultivated in the UK is wheat, and it is cultivated on approximately 1.9 million hectares of land. The production of wheat is centered on the eastern region of England, and it accounts for 58 percent of the wheat produced in the country. The annual production of wheat in total varies significantly in the country, depending primarily on climate. It typically varies from 11 million to 18 million times yearly. The wheat produced primarily for animal feeds yields about 8.5 tons per hectare while the wheat produced primarily for making bread yields a slightly lower production of approximately 7.8 tons per hectare. In comparison with the previous year, wheat production dropped by 5.1 percent in 2018 while the production of barley dropped by about 7.9 percent. The high rainfall during spring time which was again followed by long, drier summer led to a huge drop in the two crops production across the country.

  • 2. Minerals

The extraction of natural resources has a long history in the UK particularly of non-ferrous minerals (the likes of copper and tin) which have been mined from the Bronze Age era. In about 2200-850 BCE, the mining of copper in the country was carried out in Wales. Gold, copper, and lead were some of the minerals that later attracted the Roman, and the Romans were the first to introduce the use of iron tools. Slave labor was used to extract galena. Galena is the main lead ore mineral, and silver, tin, and lead were gotten from the processed and refined Galena mineral. Some of these refined metals were locally used while others were transported to various parts of the Roman Empire. More than half of the mines were the galena minerals were gotten were in deep pits, in Wales and Scotland particularly. During the industrial revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries, coal and iron ore were particularly the most important minerals. Currently, less coal and iron ore are mined in the country today. However, to this day, the country has numerous minerals, but only a few are currently mined because of factors such as; globalization which has made importation of minerals from other countries cheaper. A good instance is this; the UK has deposits of iron ore and copper but still imports from other countries like China, Brazil, the United States, Chile, and Australia. 

  • 3. Oil And Natural Gas

The United Kingdom produced about 1.42 million Barrels of Oil Equivalents (BOE) every day in 2014. The BOE is the unit of derived energy from the average released energy from 1 barrel of crude oil, and 59 percent of this was oil and liquids. In 2013, the United Kingdom consumed about 2.735 trillion cubic feet of gas and 1.508 million barrels of oil per day. Presently, the country imports hydrocarbons, just like it has been exporting the commodity from 1980 to 1990. There is presently a decline in the gas that was produced for a long time in the Southern North Sea in the Morecambe Bay. There have been discoveries in regions with the most challenge in the recent past, especially in the west of Shetland. Approximately 113 oil installations and 189 different gas stations were connected by about 9,774 miles of a pipeline by 2012. Most of the oil production is onshore. The oil produced offshore is majorly located in Dorset in Wytch Farm. There have only been few that have been drilled so far from the significant potential of shale in Bowland shale and Wealand.

  • 4. Forestry

Approximately one-tenth of UK’s land area is dedicated do productive forestry. Almost half of those woodlands are managed by the government-supported Forestry Commission while the rest are managed by private owners. Less than one-fifth of the United Kingdom’s demand is supplied by domestic timber production. Though the commission approves and encourages planting broad-leaved trees were appropriate, the majority of new plantings in upland areas are of conifers. 

  In the 1990s, the economic growth rates of the country compared favorably with those of other top industrial countries. The contribution that production added to the gross domestic product (GDP) has decreased to about one-fifth of the total. The country’s chief trading ties has moved from its former empire to other members of the European Union (EU), this amounts to more than half its trade intangible goods. The country is a major investment and trading partner with Japan as a significant investor in local production. The United Kingdom is often chosen as the European base by American and Japanese companies plus other fast-developing East Asian countries (having export-oriented economies) including the United Kingdom’s open market among their outlets. 

  The United Kingdom’s economic growth rate in 2018 was modest at around 1.3 percent. It was projected by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) that the economy in 2019 would grow by 1.6 percent. The outlook reflects the continuing political indecision and slows on investments relating to the result of the outcome of Brexit consultation. In 2019, the announced increase in government spending and tax cuts would provide a boost to the economic expansion of the country. In the last two years, the country’s competitive currency plus the strengthened world economy has encouraged the country’s export and produced a boost in tourism particularly. Modesty in the service sector is expected in 2019 while a decline is expected of the manufacturing sector.


Tag: List Of UK Natural Resources, Locations Found and Uses {Britain, England}

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