NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT CERTIFICATE
Training to work in land management -woodlands, wetlands, parks and reserves, land rehabilitation and conservation
Duration: Approximately 600 hours - to be completed as your situation permits
WHY WE NEED TO MANAGE NATURAL RESOURCES
The quality of human life is linked to the quality of our environment. Mankind depends upon the earth, either directly or indirectly, for his survival. The food we eat, the clothing we wear, the energy that prevents us from overheating or freezing; as well as our building materials, water and everything else, is derived ultimately from the soil, air, animals and plants that are found in our environment.
All of these natural resources need to be managed so they do not degrade, and ultimately disappear. Consider the following:
The use of fossil fuels to create energy is the biggest contributor to climate change. The use of fossil fuels to provide energy includes industry, households and car use, and combined they account for some 80% of carbon dioxide emissions. Other by-products include around 20% of the earth’s methane emissions as well as a significant amount of nitrous oxide.
As well as the energy sector, other industries play a significant role in carbon dioxide release, most notably agriculture. Agriculture results in changes to vegetation cover on the earth’s surface which can influence the absorption or refraction of solar energy and light, and ultimately influence climate.
Dairy cattle such as cows, goats and sheep along with other farm animals like pigs emit methane. So too do horses, buffaloes and camels.
Rainforests around the world are thought to absorb some 20% of carbon dioxide emissions which they use to produce carbon, oxygen and sugars during photosynthesis. The loss of trees is said to account for more greenhouse gas emissions than all of the world’s transport combined (including aeroplanes, ships, trains and vehicles). There has been a trend of cutting down rainforests quicker than they are able to replenish and the net effect of this is thought to account for around a 17% increase in greenhouse gases. We know that trees absorb carbon dioxide from the air, and so deforestation and land clearance result in more carbon dioxide finding its way into the atmosphere.
The expanding human population means that there is a continuing need to clear land for housing development which is often the reason for deforestation. The agriculture, housing projects or industries which then make use of the land may also produce further emissions.
Whilst much of the focus in climate change has been on carbon dioxide emissions, nitrous oxide is believed to be the third most important gas that influences global warming. It is a by-product of agriculture and burning fossil fuels. Although much less is emitted than carbon dioxide each molecule is up to 300% more active in terms of its effect on global warming.
In the past, some of the most influential chemicals affecting the disappearance of the ozone layer are the continuous use of refrigeration and air conditioning coolants, cleaning agents (solvents and degreasing), harmful aerosols (propellants) and blowing foam agents. Along with many other substances widely used by man, these chemicals release destructive chlorofluorocarbons or CFCs slowly but effectively into the atmospheric ozone layer.
Since CFCs and HCFCs have been largely phased out, and continue to be so, nitrous oxide now provides the greatest risk to ozone depletion.
Other sources of methane gas emissions include waste tips and landfill sites. The mining industry also releases methane from land drilling for oil, fracking, and coal mining. Leaking pipes also play a role. Other emissions from aerosols, insecticides, and so forth may also make a minor contribution.
Qualifications are essential for furthering your career in Natural Resource Management, however there are many other things you can do to get ahead. These include:
- experience tips - unpaid or paid, experience is highly valued by future employers.
- networking tips - become a member of relevant environmental networking groups and join website groups related to your field.
- membership - become a member of relevant groups in your field eg. the National Parks Association or Bird Observer Clubs. This is another way to demonstrate your commitment to your career.
Graduates of this course will have both a heightened awareness of natural resources industries, and a fundamental understanding of how a range of different natural resources can be managed.
- This course can be a foundation for you to launch a career or business, or advance a career you have already started.
- You will see more possibilities for employment or business than you recognised before studying.
- You will understand things that you read better; and be able to communicate better with people working in the management of natural resources.
Opportunities to specialize and move forward are always changing, depending upon many things (eg. what is being funded by governments at the time, where environmental problems have become most critical). It is difficult to predict where the work opportunities will be greatest in the future; but with a broad based understanding and heightened awareness of the industry, you will be ideally placed to both see and respond to opportunities as they emerge.
Our tutors are more than happy to answer any questions about this course, so please do ask. Click here to contact a tutor.