"Resources are not, they become." — Erich Zimmerman, 1951

Resource extraction drives many economies and is the basis of everything we manufacture. Some economies are bound, even cursed, by their dependence on resource industries for exports (e.g. DR Congo, Saudi Arabia). Other countries import resources from elsewhere and add value to them (e.g. UK, Europe, Japan, Taiwan). Driving much of this is relatively cheap energy and transportation and, in some economies, cheap labour as well. Up to now, from extraction to consumption to disposal, our resource use has been linear in nature. With foresight and critical thinking, resource use can be turned successfully into a more circular economy.

Ecological Footprint

Ecological Footprint Network

Ecological Footprint Calculator

Ecological Footprint - Do we fit on our Planet?
(Sustainability Illustrated 6:13)

What's Your Food Footprint?

(BBC Earth Lab 8:47)

Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity Explorer (Country Data)

Carbon Counter: Cars evaluated against climate targets (MIT)

Imports, Exports and the Reliance on Resources

Reliance on Natural Resources by % of GDP (2011)

Are resources a blessing, a curse or a double-edged sword? (Brookings Institute)

What is Dutch Disease? (The Resource Curse) (EI Academy: 3:47)

The Top Import of Every Country (HowMuch)

Water Resources

Aqueduct: Interactive Water Risk Atlas

Net Virtual Water Flows
(Embedded Water)

Water per tonne of food produced (Our World in Data)

How much water does it take to produce these common goods? (EARTH)

Water Use per capita
(ChartBin)

Water Footprint Network
and Personal WFP Calculator

Energy Resources

Energy Use per capita, 1965-2019
(Our World in Data)

Change in Energy Consumption, 1965-2019
(Our World in Data)

Renewable Energy (Our World in Data)

Solar Energy is Consumed Per Capita? (1965-2019)
Visual Capitalist - OWID

Explained: why renewables became so cheap so fast
(WEForum)

Solar is now cheapest electricity in history, confirms IEA (CarbonBrief)

Three Gorges Dam, China: Building the world's largest (and most controversial) power plant (TED-Ed 5:37)

Agricultural and Food Resources

Where our Food Crops Come From - Interactive Map (CIAT)

Where does our food come from (Alimentarium)

Food Production by Crop and Country (Our World in Data)

% Expenditures on Food, 2016 (OWID)

Food Sustainability Index
(also see Infographics page)

Environmental Impacts of Food Production (Our World in Data)

What's Wrong with our Food System (TED-Ed: 5:14)

3rd World Farmer

An excellent simulation to introduce what life is like for subsistence farmers

Economics of Coffee (VisualCapitalist)

The Life Cycle of a Cup of Coffee (TED-Ed 5:04)

The Real Cost of Chocolate Bar (Oxfam)

Chocolate Trade Game (ChristianAid)

Global Livestock
ArcStory: (Farm) Animal Planet

Behind the Brands: 10 Food Companies Global Control

10 Companies that Control the World's Food (WSJ: 2:22)

Monsanto: The True Cost of Our Food (OCC: 13:37)

Mineral Resources

Global Distribution of Mines
(UNEP)

Global Minerals

Minerals in a Smartphone (PDF)
from the Geological Society

USGS Smartphone Map
Article

Forest Resources

Global Forest Watch

Global Forest Change
(UMaryland)

Primary Drivers of Forest Cover Loss
(YaleE360 | Original)

Manufactured Resources

The life cycle of a T-shirt
(TED-Ed: 6:03)

A Tale of Two T-shirts (econolife)

The Real Cost of Cheap Fashion (NYT includes video 2:32)

Overdressed & Overstressed | The Impact Of Fast Fashion On Global Sustainability (Sustainable Square)

Jeans - Decision-making
(NG: Global Closet)

Global Jeans Map

Boeing's Global Supply Chain (ResearchGate)

How the iPhone is made (FinancesOnline - Infographic)

Plastics

Rivers of Plastic Infographic
(VisualCapitalist)

River plastic emissions to world's oceans (Nature)

Mapping Plastic Infographic (VisualCapitalist)

Drowning in Plastic Visualization (Reuters)

A Brief History of Plastic
(TED-Ed: 5:04)

Life Cycle of a Plastic Bottle (TED-Ed: 4:06)

Plastic Bag Bans
(The Economist)

The Circular Economy has moved to Sustainability