Saturday, 16 November 2013
Speakout Advanced p 47. The Environment. Extra Speaking
A. Have a conversation as natural as possible with a partner about the topic. Use the pictures above and the questions below to help you.
1. How do you think recycling can help the environment?
2. Can you describe any environmental disaster that has occurred in the last decade or so?
3. Besides being conscientious about switching off appliances and electronic equipment
completely when not in use, how else might we conserve energy?
4. Do you see any signs of global warming caused by human activity, or do you think it’s all a myth?
5. How would you reduce our environmental impact? What alternative energy sources can you think of?
1. What are your views on energy and the environment?
2. Will nuclear energy prove a necessary resource when our fossil fuels run out?
3. How do you think the world will look in a hundred years? What environmental damage can you think of?
1. What recommendations would you make about the world’s energy options in the next fifty years?
2. Can you think of anything that would improve the state of our environment? How can we protect it?
3. What organizations do you know of that make an effort to improve the state of the environment? What have they endeavoured to do?
endeavour to do something (formal) to try very hard to do something. Strive. E.g. I will endeavour to do my best for my country. He endeavoured in vain to escape the situation. The buyer should always endeavour to negotiate terms.
Alternative energy sources
Wind turbine: /ˈwɪnd tɜːbaɪn/ a type of modern windmill used for producing electricity.
Offshore: happening or existing in the sea, not far from the land. E.g. offshore drilling. An offshore island.
Wind farm: an area on which there are a lot of windmills or wind turbines for producing electricity.
Renewable energy: is energy which comes from natural resources such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves and geothermal heat, which are renewable.
Water power: power produced by the movement of water, used to drive machinery or produce electricity.
Tidal power, also called tidal energy, is a form of power that converts the energy of tides into useful forms of power - mainly electricity.
Wave power: power extracted from the motion of sea waves at the coast.
Geothermal energy is thermal energy generated and stored in the Earth.
Environmental damage Slick: (also oil slick) an area of oil that is floating on the surface of the sea. E.g. a 50 km slick from the damaged tanker. The slick is a serious threat to marine life.
spill: (formal spillage) [countable, uncountable] an act of letting a liquid come or fall out of a container; the amount of liquid that comes or falls out. E.g. Many seabirds died as a result of the oil spill. I wiped up the coffee spills on the table.
cause/contribute to climate change/global warming
produce pollution/CO2/greenhouse (gas) emissions
damage/destroy the environment/a marine ecosystem/the ozone layer/coral reefs
deplete natural resources/the ozone layer
deplete something /dɪˈpliːt/ to reduce something by a large amount so that there is not enough left. E.g. Food supplies were severely depleted.
degrade ecosystems/habitats/the environment
degrade something to make something become worse, especially in quality
harm the environment/wildlife/marine life
threaten natural habitats/coastal ecosystems/a species with extinction
pollute rivers and lakes/waterways/the air/the atmosphere/the environment/oceans
contaminate groundwater/the soil/food/crops
E.g. The drinking water has become contaminated with lead. A river contaminated by pollution
log something: to cut down trees in a forest for their wood.
noise pollution noun dangerous or annoying levels of noise. E.g. proposals to combat noise pollution.
light pollution: the existence of too much artificial light in the environment, for example from street lights, which makes it difficult to see the stars. E.g for many astronomers light pollution has been a disaster
smog noun polluted air that is a mixture of smoke and fog. E.g. exhaust emissions are mainly responsible for the smog.
toxic waste noun industrial or chemical waste products that are harmful to the environment.
Protecting the environment
address/combat/tackle the threat/effects/impact of climate change
fight/take action on/reduce/stop global warming
limit/curb/control air/water/atmospheric/environmental pollution
curb: to control or limit something, especially something bad
cut/reduce pollution/greenhouse gas emissions /iˈmɪʃnz/
offset carbon/CO2 emissions
carbon offset n (emissions compensation) Sp. compensación de emisiones de carbono.
preserve/conserve biodiversity/natural resources
natural resources noun valuable substances such as wood and oil that exist in a country’s land and sea. E.g. the sustainable use of natural resources.
protect endangered species/a coastal ecosystem
prevent/stop soil erosion/overfishing/massive deforestation/damage to ecosystems
raise awareness of environmental issues
save the planet/the rainforests/an endangered species
promote/encourage recycling/sustainable development/the use of renewable energy
sustainable development Economic development that is conducted without depletion (reduction) of natural resources. E.g. international policies should support sustainable development. Sustainable development has become the guiding theme in much environmental literature.
develop/invest in/promote renewable energy
Reduce (the size of) your carbon footprint: a measure of the amount of carbon dioxide that is produced by the daily activities of a person or company. E.g. Flying is the biggest contribution to my carbon footprint. An analysis of the carbon footprints of leading companies. Companies are measuring their carbon footprints.
Use recycled/ recyclable/ biodegradable material
biodegradable /ˌbaɪəʊdɪˈɡreɪdəbl/ adjective biodegradable substances can be separated into very small parts by bacteria so that they are not harmful to the environment. A substance or chemical that is biodegradable can be changed to a harmless natural state by the action of bacteria, and will therefore not damage the environment. E.g. All active ingredients of this soap powder are 98% biodegradable within three days.
non-biodegradable: a substance or chemical that is non-biodegradable cannot be changed to a harmless natural state by the action of bacteria, and may therefore damage the environment. E.g. non-biodegradable plastics.
Recycle bottles/ packaging/ paper/ plastic/ waste
Reduce your dependence/ reliance on fossil fuels.
Get/ obtain/ generate/ produce electricity from wind, solar and wave power/ renewable sources. Build/ develop a (50-megawatt /ˈmeɡəwɒt/ /offshore) wind farm.
Install solar panels (a piece of equipment on a roof that uses light and heat energy from the sun to produce hot water and electricity).
harness something to control and use the force or strength of something to produce power or to achieve something. E.g. attempts to harness the sun’s rays as a source of energy. We must harness the skill and creativity of our workforce. How can this energy be harnessed effectively for the good of humankind? They are attempting to harness the power of the sun.
double glazing: windows that have two layers of glass with a space between them, designed to make the room warmer and to reduce noise. E.g. We're having double-glazing fitted.
pane: a single sheet of glass in a window. E.g. a pane of glass. a windowpane.
insulate something (from/against something) /ˈɪnsjuleɪt/ to protect something with a material that prevents heat, sound, electricity, etc. from passing through. E.g. Home owners are being encouraged to insulate their homes to save energy.