Friday, January 26, 2018

A Deeper Look at Geography , Natural Resources and Politics

The intersection of geography and politics

 Geography is a crucial element of many political decision and policies. The location of natural resources, territories and boundaries in addition to access to bodies of water impacts decision making on a large scale. The designation of capital cities and voting districts are geographical features that have a significant impact on politics. The terms country and nation are often used interchangeably, however not all nations are countries and not all countries are nations. A country is a political entity which is equivalent to a state.  A nation refers to a collective group of people bound together by a common culture and shared geography. Some nations have a state, and other nations do not, some states have multiple nations. The majority of countries are divided into states, provinces or territories of some kind. There are however some larger countries that don't have clearly defined territories.

Countries and the Distribution of Natural Resources

Another significant factor in how geopolitical boundaries are determined is the distribution of natural resources. Natural resources are material located in the environment that are used to provide food, fuel, shelter and clothing to maintain a livelihood. Some of these include, water, oil, vegetation, wildlife, air and sunlight. Resources are necessary to maintain the life cycle on Planet Earth. Various regions of the globe tend to have certain resources. Low latitudes (latitudes close to the equator) receive more of the sun's energy and much precipitation, while higher latitudes (latitudes closer to the poles) receive less of the sun's energy and too little precipitation. 

The temperate deciduous forest biome provides a more moderate climate, along with fertile soil, timber, and abundant wildlife. The plains offer flat landscapes and fertile soil for growing crops, while steep mountains and dry deserts are more challenging. Metallic minerals are most abundant in areas with strong tectonic activity, while fossil fuels are found in rocks formed by deposition (sedimentary rocks). These are just a few of the differences in the environment that result from different natural conditions. As a result, resources are distributed unevenly across the globe. The distribution of natural resources makes a difference in terms of lifestyle and the day to day experience and life perspectives of people living in a country. The lifestyle and experiences of someone in Dubai are going to be quite different from a person living in the heart of Siberia. Climate, solar exposure, and vegetation are a few of the things that impact everyday life.

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