What are the Natural Resources of Peru?

The Natural resources of Peru Are mainly based on copper, silver, gold, oil, wood, fishing, iron ore, coal, phosphate, potash, hydro power and natural gas.

Peru is located to the west of South America limiting to the west with the Pacific Ocean, the north with Ecuador and Colombia, the east with Brazil and the south with Bolivia and Chile; Its geographical coordinates are 1000 ° S, 7600 ° W, with an average elevation of 1,555 masl.


It has a total area of ​​1'285.216 km2, of which 1'279.996 km2 are land and 5.220 km2 are water.

Of maritime territory the country has 200 mn; 18.8% of their land is devoted to agriculture, while 53% to forests and 28.2% to urban and other areas; Together with Bolivia, both countries share control of Lake Titicaca. (CIA, 2015)

Its climate is tropical in the east, dry desert in the west and frozen temperatures in the Andes. It comprises the following eco-regions: the western coastal plain, in the center the Andean mountains and the low jungle of the Amazon Basin; The lowest point is in the Pacific Ocean at 0 msnm and its highest point in the snow massif of Huascarán that is at 6,768 msnm (CIA, 2015).

In order to protect its resources, the country has a number of international agreements, among which: Antarctic environment protocol, Antarctic marine resources, Antarctic Treaty, biodiversity, climate change, change protocol Climate change in Kyoto, desertification, endangered species, hazardous wastes, marine debris, ozone layer protection, ship pollution, tropical timber 83, tropical timber 94, wetlands, whaling (CIA, 2015).

Hydrocarbons and hydroelectric power

Although hydrocarbons are an important economic source of the country, its reserves are not as significant at world level, as is the case with hydroelectric energy generated, since in a world classification none of these items exceeds the 30th place in the list ( CIA, 2015).

Peru's forests and their importance to the world

Peru is the second largest Latin American country in the Amazon, the fourth largest in tropical forests (surpassed by Brazil, Congo and Indonesia) and the sixth in primary forests (FAO, 2015).

Peru has 42 types of forests according to the vegetation cover map 2015 - MINAM grouped into three large blocks: Amazon rainforest, representing 94.1% of the country's total forests, dry forests of the coast that are 5.6% and forests Humid Andean relics with 0.3% (Ministry of the Environment, 2016).

The main problem in Peru is the confusion of the benefits that the forest generates to the man, since many of its citizens have the idea that the most profitable they can obtain of him is the wood ignoring all the ecosystem services that it generates and that they do Of the forest a self-sustaining supplier of resources not only for Peruvians but for the rest of the world.

They are protected by the laws of the country, since 33% of the forests in the Amazon have a concession to be taken advantage of, between 1999 and 2005 the ranges of disturbance and deforestation through the Peruvian amazon have gone in average per year of 632 Km2 and 645 km2 respectively (Oliveira, et al., 1995).

The old settlers of Peru had a respect for nature that they transmitted from generation to generation, but with the arrival of the Spaniards, the miscegenation and globalization became less.

Throughout science, self-sustainability has been tested in comparison to deforested areas, such as accelerated decomposition and regeneration (Horgan, 2005), which bring benefits such as infiltration of water, temperate climates, preservation of flora And wildlife and the landscape element that is the one that fills the soul of the individual.

Turkey forests Figure 1. Large forest types of Peru. Source: Forest Mapping Unit and Conservation Monitoring PNCBMCC, 2015.

Ichthyofaunistic resources

Lake Titicaca is located across the border between Bolivia and Peru, its length is 8,100 km2, its altitude is 3,808 masl and is connected to three basins: Lago Grande, Puno Bay and Lake Pequeiio (Richerson, Widmer, and Kittel 1977; Boulange and Aquize 1981; Levieil, 1990).

A total of 151 communities around the Titicaca River that maintain and defend their fishing territories have been counted (Levieil, 1990).

However, not only the lake has been the main place where fishing is practiced, in the Pacific Ocean has also been made present practice; Both places have been adversely affected by the phenomenon of The boy (Roselló, et al., 2001).

As the temperature of the water changes, this in turn causes the habitat that was previously suitable for some fish and is no longer so close to the areas that used to do so.


Between 1990 and 2007 Peru obtained.35 billion dollars in mining investments; In 2009 it was the leading producer of silver, 2 ° of copper and zinc, 5 ° of lead and 6 ° of gold (Bebbington & Bury, 2009). Besides, and N 2007 ranked 7th in exploration investments.

The country's 20% of GDP comes from mining (Swenson, 2011), but not everything is good for the Peruvians in this sector, and the damages they have been causing to their waters are invaluable and the skepticism of those affected The mining companies are increasing to the point of disputes about whether it is convenient for Peru to operate these companies (Bebbington & Williams, 2008).


  1. (2015). The world factbook. December 19, 2016, from CIA
  2. (2015). Global Forest Resources Assessment 2015. December 21, 2016 FAO.
  3. (2016). Conservation of forests in Peru (2011 - 2016). Ministry of the environment.
  4. Horgan, F. (2005). Effects of deforestation on diversity, biomass and function of dung beetles on the eastern slopes of the Peruvian Andes. Forest Ecology and Management, 216, 117-133.
  5. Oliveira, P., Asner, G., Knapp, D., Almeyda, A., Galvan-Gildemeister, R., Keene, S., Raybin, R. & Smith, R. (1995). Land - use allocation protect the Peruvian Amazon. American Association for the Advancement of Science, Vol. 317, pp. 1233-1236.
  6. Swenson, J., Carter, C., Domec Jean-Christophe, Delgado, C. (2011). Gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon: Global prices, deforestation and mercury imports. PLoS ONE 6 (4): e18875. Doi: 10.1371 / journal.pone.0018875
  7. Levieil, D. & Orlove, B. (1990). Local control of Aquatic Resources: Community and ecology in Lake Titicaca, Peru. American anthropologist, vol. 92, pp. 362-382.
  8. Roselló, E., Vásquez, V., Morales, A. & Rosales, T. (1990). Marine resources from an urban Moche (470 -600 AD) area in the"Huacas del sol y la luna"archaeological complex (Trujillo, Peru). International journal of Osteoarcchaeology, vol. 11, pp. 72-87.
  9. Bebbington, A. & Bury, J. (2009). Institutional challenges for mining and sustainability in Peru. National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 106, No. 41, pp. 17296-17301.
  10. Bebbington, A. & William, M. (2008). Water and mining conflicts in Peru. Mountain Research and Development, Vol. 28, No. 3/4, pp. 190-195.

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