Primary economic activity

Forums Junior Cert Geography Primary economic activity

  • This topic is empty.
Viewing 2 reply threads
  • Author
    • #14211

      What does this actually mean,i cant find a definition anywhere

    • #685

      :What does this actually mean,i cant find a definition anywhere

    • #14212

      Primary Economic Activities

      Primary economic activities are those activities where natural resources are extracted from the earth. Examples of primary activities are mining, farming and fishing.

      Natural resources are those resources, which are found in nature and are of benefit to mankind.

      In this section of the course, you are expected to know about natural resources such as oil, peat and water. You will also be expected to answer questions on such primary economic activities as farming and fishing.

      Natural resources

      1. Oil/gas: this is a finite resource i.e. it is non-renewable. Once it is used it cannot be used again. You should know about the search for oil and gas in the Irish Sea. In particular be able to locate the Kinsale gas field (off the coast of Cork) and the Corrib gas field (off the coast of Mayo). Higher-level students are also required to have some knowledge of oil production abroad, e.g. in Saudi Arabia, and the impact of the discovery of oil in that country.

      2. Peat: the extraction of peat is another example of a primary economic activity. About 15% of Ireland is covered in bog — either raised bog (up to ten metres deep and found in the Central Plain) or the shallower blanket-bog (about 2 – 3 metres deep and found in many mountainous areas).

      You should know how Ireland has exploited this resource, the work of Bord na Móna and the future potential for the cut away bogs. Awareness that there is some disagreement between the commercial users and the conservationists on what to do with the remainder of Ireland’s peat lands is also important.

      3. Water: the importance of water as a natural resource can often be forgotten in a country like Ireland where there often seems to be more of it than we would wish for. The importance of water in both the First World and the Third World needs to be explored. You should know about water supplies in Ireland — most textbooks carry a brief study of Dublin’s water supply, for example.

      The vital importance of water in poorer countries should also be noted e.g. irrigation in the Nile Basin in Egypt or the spread of deserts (desertification) in the Sahel area of North Africa due to lack of rainfall and over-grazing are good areas of study.

      Primary activities

      1. Farming: as already noted, farming is a primary economic activity. Farming in Ireland makes a great contribution to the economy, employing people not just as farmers but also in industry and services associated with farming.

      A distinction should be made between arable farming (the growing of crops) and pastoral farming (the keeping of livestock, usually beef or dairy cattle). Mixed farming (the growing of crops and the keeping of livestock on the one farm) is quite typical in Ireland.

      Students are required to understand the concept of farming as a system with inputs (raw materials, labour, etc.), processes (sowing, harvesting, etc.) and outputs (the finished products such as crops and milk). Irish farming does not operate in isolation and the influence of the EU has been of great significance to Ireland.

      2. Fishing: is another example of a primary economic activity. Fish are a renewable resource but over fishing (catching too many fish, thus preventing them from replacing themselves) is a real danger in many areas. The three major types of fish found in Irish waters are pelagic (e.g. herring), demersal (e.g. cod) and shellfish (e.g. prawns.)

      You should know that Irish waters make good fishing grounds for the following reasons:

      * The continental shelf around Ireland is a shallow area which encourages the growth of plankton (fish food).

      * The warm North Atlantic Drift makes for ideal sea temperatures and keeps our ports ice-free.

      * There is very little pollution in Irish coastal waters.

      Over fishing (particularly by non-Irish boats) is a real concern and the EU has had to impose quotas on the amount of fish caught in order to protect the stocks. The increasing importance of fish farming (aquaculture) around the Irish coast should also be noted.

      Taken from

Viewing 2 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.