Підручник Англійська мова 9 клас для спеціалізованих шкіл з поглибленим вивченням англійської мови - Л.В. Калініна - Генеза 2017 рік

Unit 2. Nature around us

2.2. Threats to Environment

Word Bank

• glacier;

• substances;

• throughout;

• deforestation;

• irreparable;

• landslide;

• to harm;

• disaster;

• fallout;

• waste.

Phrase Bank

• global warming;

• acid rain;

• to emit smoke into the air;

• water vapour;

• to disturb natural balance;

• volcanic eruptions;

• unrestricted cutting of trees;

• mountain torrent;

• to cause environmental concern;

• oil spill;

• to be radioactively contaminated;

• the matter of worldwide concern.

Communication Box

• However, ...

• Primarily, ...

• Suffice it to mention ...

I. Go Ahead!

Look at the photos and say which of the environmental problems are typical of your country.

Air pollution

Water pollution


Radioactive contamination

Example: I think air pollution is typical of big Ukrainian cities where there are many big plants and factories.

II. Reading

Read the newspaper and magazine articles and say what global problems they touch upon.

Most of the talk these days is about global warming which means the rise of air temperature near Earth’s surface. Earth has experienced periods of gradual warming and cooling through its existence due to natural causes such as volcanic eruptions and variations in the Sun’s output. However, scientists have attributed the current increase in global temperatures to human causes - primarily the release of certain gases into the atmosphere as a result of industrial activity.

A major report on global warming has warned that average world temperatures may rise by several degrees in the next century, due to the build-up of ‘greenhouse gases’ in the Earth’s atmosphere. As the Earth gets hotter, consequently the ice caps and glaciers may melt and sea levels may rise. It’s time for action before we’re all sunk! Let’s become environmentally-educated.

(The National Geographic)

Every year more and more plants and animals disappear never to be seen again. In many lakes and rivers fish are dying and some lakes have no fish at all.

Trees are also in serious danger. This new danger attacks all trees like oak, beech and birch as well as fir tree and pine. First the branches turn yellow and brown. Then the trees needles or leaves fall. The roots and the trunk shrink. Finally the trees die.

What is killing fish and trees? The problem is acid rains. Factories, power stations and cars emit tons of smoke into the air. The smoke contains substances which mix with water vapour in atmosphere and therefore form acid. Sunlight turns these acids into poisonous oxidants which fall in rain. The wind carries the poisonous substances from one country to another and pollutes the air. It must be stopped. If people of the world don’t unite their efforts against acid rains, trees and fish will die and we will too.

(The Times)

Are the trees threatened only by pollution? Is deforestation caused by pollution? In many parts of the world people are to blame for that. The great rainforests of Asia and South America are being destroyed for firewood and building material. People do not realize that a forest is more than a collection of trees. It’s a complex community of plant and animal life. Trees are important because they provide home for many other plants and animals too. They protect the flowers which grow on the forest floor, provide food for insects, reptiles, birds and mammals. They protect the soil from the wind and the rain. Most important of all - the forests are the lungs of the planet. They produce the oxygen which we breathe.

Man’s unrestricted cutting of trees disturbs the natural balance so much that it may cause irreparable damage like landslides or mountain torrents. Something must be done until it’s too late.

(The Mirror)

Some of the most serious ‘man-made’ challenges to the environment occurred at the end of the 20th century - the beginning of the 21st century as a consequence causing the environmental concern around the globe.

Widely spread environmental disasters are massive oil spills. Suffice it to mention the world’s largest accidental oil spill - the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, which polluted a vast territory in the Gulf. As a result, a lot of fish, turtle, marine mammals and birds were significantly harmed.

Nuclear power plants can also bring environmental disasters. Thus on April 26, 1986 the worst accident in nuclear power history occurred at a nuclear plant in Chernobyl near the town of Prypiat, Ukraine. The World Health Organization estimates that over 200 000 people died as a consequence of the fallout. The whole area was radioactively contaminated and a radioactive cloud covered not only Ukraine, but other countries as well.

Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan on March 11, 2011 showed us once again that nuclear reactors are fundamentally dangerous as they cause significant damage to the environment and health of people. Isn’t it the matter of worldwide concern? Let’s think about it.

Green Peace Journal

Across Cultures

The Times - a British national daily newspaper, the oldest in England.

The Mirror - one of Britain’s national daily newspapers, formally called the “Daily Mirror”.

The National Geaographic - a US magazine published each month by the National Geaographic Society. It is famous for its beautiful photographs as well as its articles about animals and different countries.

BP - trademark for British petroleum; a British company producing petrol and chemicals.

The Gulf of Mexico - an area of the Atlantic ocean south of the US east of Mexico and west of Cuba.

Fukushima - a nuclear plant in Japan.

III. Language Track

1. In the text, find the words in which letter combinations ‘ar’ and ‘or’ are read as /a:/, /ɔ:/. Reproduce the sentences with them in context. Practise saying them in your own sentences.

Example: Warming /ɔ:/

Most of the talk these days is about global warming. I think global warming affects many people’s lives, especially sick people.

1. Study the difference in meanings. In the articles find and reproduce the sentences with them in context and make up your sentences by analogy.

to pollute - to make air, water, soil dangerously dirty and not suitable for people to use.

to contaminate - to make a place dirty or harmful by chemicals or poison.

Example: The factory pollutes the air and, water.

Example: The explosion of Chernobyl power station contaminated a lot of area.

2. In the articles, find words and phrases which describe the cause of environmental concern. Interpret their meanings in context and say if you agree with the statements.

Example: As the Earth gets hotter, consequently, the ice caps and glaciers may melt and sea levels may rise. I agree that global warming influences the environment and leads to the change of climate.

t the placards displayed at one Ukrainian school ecological club. In the articles, find words and phrases attributable to each placard and use them filling in Taras’s and Oksana’s thought bubbles (p. 51).

1. From the articles, reproduce grammar items in bold and interpret their meanings in context.

2. Complete the instruction and illustrate it with your own examples.

1. If you want to introduce a clause of result, use...

3. Look at the ecological placards of ex. 3 on p. 50 and say what the results of the activities in them will be, if they are not stopped in time.

Example: People cut a lot of trees in the Carpathian Mountains. As a result there will be landslides which are harmful for the people who live in the area.

IV. Communication Track


a) Suppose you are given the floor at the conference on the environmental problems. What threats to environment will you talk about? Use the guide lines.

b) In pairs, discuss the content of one of the articles using the pattern below.


A. Have you read ... ?

B. Sure, and it produced ... .

A As for me, I ... .

B. Unbelievable, but ... and ... surprised me a lot. If we ... we can ... .

A. Unfortunately, ... .

B. That’s just it. ... a great warning.

A. Besides, in many parts of ... .

B. Isn’t it ... ?

A. It sure is.

B. Agreed. We must ... .

A It’s time for action or ... .

B. Exactly. People of the world should ... .

c) In the whole class, look at the set of pictures and dispute over the great Finnish philosopher’s words:

"... man places competition before morality ... economy before ecology which will lead to man’s own annihilation”.

(George Henrick von Wright)


a) Before you listen

Before you listen to the information about environmental problems in Britain, write five questions you’d like to get answers to.

b) While you listen

Listen to the information and correct the mistakes in the following statements:

1. Smog is a mixture of mist and fog.

2. “Pea Soup” was described in the works of Dickens and Byron.

3. All the rivers in Britain are polluted.

4. There was a very awful smell from the Houses of Parliament.

5. In the 19th century when people fell into the river Thames they had heart problems.

6. In the 60s and 70s the government forbade the heating of homes with open wood fires.

7. At present it is also impossible to catch fish in the Thames.

8. In the 20th century double-deckers pollute the air in London.

9. The doctors regularly issue warnings of ‘poor air quality’.

10. Sportsmen are not recommended to leave the houses in poor weather conditions.

c) After you listen

Say if any other countries, including Ukraine, experienced the same environmental problem as Britain.


a) Before you write

If you want to warn somebody of coming danger or give some information on a particular subject, write a warning leaflet.

• Brainstorm with your friends about what important environmental problems you’ll write a warning leaflet.

• Make a list of words and phrases you’ll use in your warning leaflet to sound convincing.

b) While you write

How to Write a Warning Leaflet

Content Tips

Language Tips

• Give a title to a warning leaflet;

• Decide on the things you want to warn about;

• Give a short general description of the idea;

• Explain why this / that thing is dangerous (or may happen);

• Recommend a reader how he / she can avoid or prevent it.

• A warning should be given...

• Be careful not to...

• Take notice of ...

• ... can affect anyone at any time

• Apart from ... it may ...

• Lack of... may lead to ...

• See if...

• In the case of...

At Home: In your WB write a warning leaflet.

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