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Natural resources are the resources that occur naturally within the
environment and are often left undisturbed. They are found naturally in the environment. The amount of both biodiversity and geodiversity in the ecosystem are the characteristics of any natural resources. In that sense the beautiful city of Guwahati is blessed with abundance of natural resources,
including river, minerals and forest reserves. The city is rich in both biotic and abiotic resources such as forests and animals, land, freshwater and air. Let us have a closer look at the resources of Guwahati.
River Resources of Guwahati
Brahmaputra is the main river of Guwahati originating in Tibet and is one of the largest rivers in Asia. The river is about 2900 km long and is important for irrigation and transportation. The River has a total drainage area of about 935,500 sq. km and its maximum depth is 120 metres. The Brahmaputra valley lies in the rain shadow area of the Himalayas. The environment of the Brahmaputra floodplains are known as the Brahmaputra Valley semi-evergreen forests ecoregion. Brahmaputra is prone to catasthropic flooding in spring when the Himalayan snow melts. Periodic flood of the Brahmaputra helps in maintaining the lowland grasslands and associated wildlife. The periodic floods also deposits fresh alluvium replenishing the fertile soil of the Brahmaputra river valley.
Minerals Resources of Guwahati
Guwahati city has mineral reserves in the form of oil and natural gas. The Guwahati Refinery, the petroleum refinery of IOCL at Noonmati, is the most important manufacturing industry in the city. The refinery has a capacity of 1.00 MMTPA. The refinery produces diesel, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), petrol, furnace oil, kerosene, coke and so on. Guwahati also has reserve in the form of natural gas. Natural gas is a source of power and other chemical by products. There are LPG bottling plants at North Guwahati.
Biotic Resources of Guwahati
Biotic resources are those resources that are obtained from the biosphere such as forest and animals. The reserved forests which account for biotic resources within the limits of GMC are Hengrabari, Phatasil and Jalukbari. These forests are under the administrative control of the Divisional Forest Office, Kamrup (East) Forest Division. Rani and Garbhanga reserved forests are also located in Guwahati. These reserved forests have a large population of elephants. Deepor Beel in Guwahati is a famous wildlife sanctuary here having vast forest area and known for having varied bird-life. The environment of Guwahati is rich in wildlife having several rare mammals such as Asian elephants, tiger, python and primates. Guwahati also has a rich and diverse avifauna in and around the city.
Tea occupies an important place in the resources of Guwahati. Therefore, for the better marketing of tea in the region the Tea Auction Centre was established in Guwahati in 1970. This is the world’s largest CTC tea auction centre and the world’s second in terms of total tea where the major commodity under hammer is the Assam Tea.