Sie sind auf Seite 1von 16

Haze at record levels in Singapore (23rd June, 2013) Pollution levels in Singapore caused by forest fires in Indonesia are

continuing to reach new record highs. The Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit 401 on Friday, the highest ever recorded in Singapore. The previous high was in 1997 when the PSI reached 226. A PSI of 150 is deemed to be "unhealthy", while anything above 300 is defined as "hazardous". Singapore's government said a reading above 400 sustained for 24 hours "may be life-threatening to ill and elderly persons". It has advised all of its citizens to stay indoors and to wear face masks if they have to go outside. Authorities will distribute one million masks free to the poorest 200,000 households starting from Sunday. The haze has strained relations between Singapore and Indonesia over who is responsible for the choking smog. Singapore has accused Indonesia of recklessness and irresponsibility in letting fires get so out of control. Indonesia responded by calling Singapore hypocritical, as many of its companies own plantations where fires are being set to clear forests for cultivation. Indonesia's Foreign Ministry would not apologise for the haze crisis, but insisted that everything was being done to tackle the problem. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said "all the country's resources" would be mobilised to extinguish the fires. Singapore's Prime Minister warned that the haze could last until the end of the dry season in October. Vocab: smog / pollution / forest fires / record highs / hazardous / life-threatening / face masks / strained relations / choking smog / recklessness / hypocritical / cultivation / dry season

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if a-h below are true (T) or false (F).
a. Fires in Singapore have resulted in record levels of pollution. b. Pollution levels are over twice those considered to be unhealthy. T/F T/F

c. Singapore's government has told people to wear face masks indoors. d. Singapore's government will soon hand out 200,000 face masks. e. Singapore has shared blame for the fires with Indonesia. f. Indonesia said Singapore was being hypocritical. g. Indonesia said it would not say sorry to Singapore for the fires. h. The pollution could be a problem until October.

T/F T T T T T / / / / / F F F F F

2. SYNONYM MATCH:Match the following synonyms from the article.


1. 2 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. previous deemed sustained citizens distribute strained recklessness hypocritical tackle extinguish a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j. put out Carelessness hand out Prior Considered insincere continued nationals awkward deal with

3. PHRASE MATCH: (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)


1. continuing to 2 3. 4. 5. The previous anything above 300 is It has advised all of its citizens Authorities will distribute a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j. defined as "hazardous" to tackle the problem one million masks out of control reach new record highs the end of the dry season relations to stay indoors forests for cultivation high was in 1997

6. strained 7. 8. 9. 10. letting fires get so fires are being set to clear everything was being done the haze could last until

GAP FILL
Levels in Singapore caused by forest fires in Indonesia are (1) ____________ to reach new record highs. The Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit 401 on Friday, the highest ever (2) ____________ in Singapore. The previous (3) ____________ was in 1997 when the PSI reached 226. A PSI of 150 is deemed to be "unhealthy", while anything above 300 is (4) ____________ as "hazardous". Singapore's government said a (5) ____________ above 400 sustained for 24 hours "may be life-(6) ____________ to ill and elderly persons". It has advised all of its citizens to stay indoors and to wear face masks if they have to go outside. Authorities will (7) ____________ one million masks free to the poorest 200,000 (8) ____________ starting from Sunday. The haze has (9) ____________ relations between Singapore and Indonesia over who is responsible for the (10) ____________ smog. Singapore has accused Indonesia of (11) ____________ and irresponsibility in letting fires get so out of control. Indonesia responded by calling Singapore (12) ____________, as many of its companies own plantations where fires are being set to clear forests for (13) ____________. Indonesia's Foreign Ministry would not apologise for the haze crisis, but insisted that everything was being done to (14) ____________ the problem. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said "all the country's resources" would be mobilised to (15) ____________ the fires. Singapore's Prime Minister warned that the haze could last until the end of the (16) ____________ season in October.

LISTENING Guess the answers. Listen to check


1) Pollution levels in Singapore caused by forest fires in Indonesia are continuing to reach ______ a. new recording highs b. new records highs c. new record highs d. new recorded highs 2) The previous high was in 1997 when the ______ a. PSI reached 226 b. BCI reached 226 c. PXI reached 226 d. BSI reached 226 3) anything above 300 is ______ a. defined as "hazards us" b. defined "as hazard as" c. defined as "has a dose" d. defined as "hazardous" 4) a reading above 400 sustained for 24 hours may ______ a. be life-threaten in b. be life-threatening c. be life-threat an inn d. be life-treating an 5) Authorities will distribute one million masks free to the poorest ______

6)

7)

8)

9)

10 )

a. 200,000 houses hold b. 200,000 how solders c. 200,000 householders d. 200,000 households The haze has ______ between Singapore and Indonesia a. stained relations b. stringed relations c. strayed relations d. strained relations Singapore has accused Indonesia of ______ a. recklessness and responsibility b. reckless and irresponsibility c. recklessness and irresponsible d. recklessness and irresponsibility Indonesia responded by calling ______ a. Singapore hippo-critical b. Singapore hypocritical c. Singapore hip or critical d. Singapore hype or critic all plantations where fires are being set to clear ______ a. forests for cultivation b. forests for cultivating c. forests for cult aviation d. forests for colt ovation all the country's resources would be mobilised to ______ a. b. c. d. distinguish the fires ex-anguish the fires exiting wish the fires extinguish the fires

LISTENING Listen and fill in the gaps


Pollution levels in Singapore (1) ____________________ in Indonesia are continuing to reach new record highs. The Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit 401 on Friday, the (2) ____________________ in Singapore. The previous high was in 1997 when the PSI reached 226. A PSI of 150 is (3) ____________________, while anything above 300 is defined as "hazardous". Singapore's government said a (4) ____________________ for 24 hours "may be life-threatening to ill

and elderly persons". It has advised (5) ____________________ stay indoors and to wear face masks if they have to go outside. Authorities will distribute one million masks free to the poorest (6) _______________________ from Sunday. The (7) _______________________ between Singapore and Indonesia over who is responsible (8) ____________________. Singapore has accused Indonesia of recklessness and irresponsibility (9) ____________________ of control. Indonesia responded by calling Singapore hypocritical, as many of its companies own plantations where fires (10) ____________________ forests for cultivation. Indonesia's Foreign Ministry would not apologise for the haze crisis, but insisted that everything was being done to tackle the problem. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said "all the country's resources" would be (11) ____________________ the fires. Singapore's Prime Minister warned that the haze could (12) _______________________ season in October.

COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS
1. What does PSI mean? 2. When did the PSI first hit 226? 3. What PSI level is considered to be hazardous? 4. Who is at risk with PSI levels above 400? 5. Who will get a free face mask? 6. What adjective was used to describe the smog? 7. What did Indonesia call Singapore? 8. Who will not apologise? 9. What is Indonesia doing to tackle the problem? 10. Until which month could the haze continue?

MULTIPLE CHOICE - QUIZ


1. What does PSI mean? 6. a) Polluting State Information b) Pollution Searching Inspection c) Pollutant Standards Index d) Polluted Singapore Initiative 2. When did the PSI first hit 226? 7. What adjective was used to describe the smog? a) unacceptable b) choking c) grey d) smoggy What did Indonesia call Singapore?

a) 1997 b) last week c) earlier this year d) October 21, 2004 3. What PSI level is considered to be 8. hazardous? a) 280 b) 300 c) 150 d) 226 4. Who is at risk with PSI levels 9. above 400? a) athletes b) babies c) Singapore's government d) the elderly 5. Who will get a free face mask? 10. a) elderly people b) models c) the poorest households d) Singapore's government

a) complaining b) inferior c) unlucky d) hypocritical Who will not apologise? a) Singapore's government b) Indonesia's Foreign Ministry c) those slashing and burning d) plantation workers What is Indonesia doing to tackle the problem? a) this and that b) everything c) talking d) nothing Until which month could the haze continue? a) October b) August c) September d) November

Putin will not hand Snowden to U.S. (27th June, 2013) The escapades of US whistleblower and fugitive Edward Snowden continue. Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed on Tuesday that the former CIA worker was in the transit area of an airport in Moscow. Mr Putin had earlier said Mr Snowden had not crossed any Russian borders, which proved to be true with Snowden being in transit. Snowden seems to have given the international media the slip while in Moscow. After discovering his name on a flight list to Havana, Cuba, around 30 journalists purchased last-minute tickets for the 16-hour flight to Cuba, only to be dismayed to find out after takeoff that he had not boarded the aircraft. Reports are that Snowden is heading for Ecuador, which has granted him asylum. The Snowden affair is stoking up diplomatic tensions between the USA, and China and Russia. Washington is furious that China allowed Snowden to leave Hong Kong for Russia earlier this week. US Secretary of State John Kerry is now pressing hard for Russia to extradite Snowden back to the US. Mr Putin told reporters: "Mr Snowden has not crossed the state's border, and therefore does not need a visa. Furthermore, any accusations against Russia of aiding him are ravings and rubbish." He explained that the US and Russia had not signed any extradition treaty and that he would not hand Snowden over to the US. Mr Kerry acknowledged this but said, "there are standards of behaviour between sovereign nations". Vocab: escapade / whistleblower / CIA / in transit / give someone the slip / dismayed / asylum / diplomatic tensions / furious / extradition / accusations / ravings / treaty / behavior 1. TRUE / FALSE:Read the headline. Guess if a-h below are true (T) or false (F).
a. Edward Snowden is not in a Russian airport. T/F

b. c. d. e.

Snowden has not crossed the border into Russia. Many journalists got on a plane they thought Snowden was on. Ecuador has said it would take Snowden in. The Snowden affair is creating tensions between China and Russia. f. Putin said he would not sign an extradition treaty with the USA. g. Putin accused the USA of crazy talk over the Snowden affair. h. John Kerry suggested Russia should behave and hand Snowden over.

T T T T

/ / / /

F F F F

T/F T/F T/F

2. SYNONYM MATCH:Match the following synonyms from the article.


1. 2 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. escapades confirmed dismayed boarded asylum stoking up allowed extradite accusations treaty a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j. adding fuel to refuge allegations adventures pact repatriate got on verified permitted horrified

3. PHRASE MATCH: (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)


1. escapades of US whistleblower and 2 3. 4. 5. seems to have given the After discovering his he had not boarded granted him a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. j. international media the slip treaty diplomatic tensions asylum fugitive Edward Snowden nations the aircraft of behaviour name on a flight list to extradite Snowden

6. stoking up 7. pressing hard for Russia 8. extradition 9. standards 10. sovereign

GAP FILL

The (1) ____________ of US whistleblower and fugitive Edward Snowden continue. Russian President Vladimir Putin (2) ____________ on Tuesday that the former CIA worker was in the transit area of an airport in Moscow. Mr Putin had earlier said Mr Snowden had not crossed any Russian borders, which (3) ____________ to be true with Snowden being in transit. Snowden seems to have given the international media the (4) ____________ while in Moscow. After discovering his name on a (5) ____________ list to Havana, Cuba, around 30 journalists purchased last-minute tickets for the 16-hour flight to Cuba, only to be (6) ____________ to find out after takeoff that he had not (7) ____________ the aircraft. Reports are that Snowden is heading for Ecuador, which has (8) ____________ him asylum. The Snowden affair is (9) ____________ up diplomatic tensions between the USA, and China and Russia. Washington is (10) ____________ that China allowed Snowden to leave Hong Kong for Russia earlier this week. US Secretary of State John Kerry is now (11) ____________ hard for Russia to (12) ____________ Snowden back to the US. Mr Putin told reporters: "Mr Snowden has not crossed the state's (13) ____________, and therefore does not need a visa. Furthermore, any (14) ____________ against Russia of aiding him are ravings and rubbish." He explained that the US and Russia had not signed any extradition (15) ____________ and that he would not hand Snowden over to the US. Mr Kerry acknowledged this but said, "there are (16) ____________ of behaviour between sovereign nations".

dismayed slip confirmed granted escapades flight boarded proved

pressing treaty border stoking furious standards extradite accusations

LISTENING Guess the answers. Listen to check


1) The escapades of US whistleblower and fugitive Edward ______ a. Snowden continuation b. Snowden continuing c. Snowden continue d. Snowden continues 2) ______ worker was in the transit area of an airport in Moscow a. the firmer CIA b. the former CIA c. the farmer CIA d. the foreman CIA

3) Snowden seems to have given the international ______ a. media the slip b. media a slip c. media this slip d. media that slip 4) around 30 journalists purchased last-minute tickets for the ______ a. 16-hour flights b. 16-hours flight c. 16-hourly flights d. 16-hour flight 5) Snowden is heading for Ecuador, which has ______ a. granted him a slum b. granted him asylum c. granted him a sigh lamb d. granted him an asylum 6) The Snowden affair is stoking ______ a. up diplomatic tensions b. upper-diplomatic tensions c. un-diplomatic tensions d. up diplomacy tensions 7) John Kerry is now pressing hard for Russia ______ back to the US a. to extradited Snowden b. to extradite Snowden c. to extraditing Snowden d. to extra date Snowden 8) any accusations against Russia of aiding him are ______ a. ravings and rubbish b. ravings and garbage c. ravings and trash d. ravings and litter 9) He explained that the US and Russia had not signed any ______ a. extraditing treaty b. extradition treaty c. expedition treaty d. extra-diction treaty 10 there are standards of behaviour between ______ ) a. sovereign nations b. sovereignty nations c. sobering nations d. suffering nations

LISTENING Listen and fill in the gaps


The (1) ____________________________ and fugitive Edward Snowden continue. Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed on Tuesday that the former CIA worker was (2) ____________________________ airport in Moscow. Mr Putin had earlier said Mr Snowden had not crossed any Russian borders, (3) ____________________________ with Snowden being in transit. Snowden seems to have given the (4) ________________________ while in Moscow. After discovering his name on a flight list to Havana, Cuba, around 30 journalists purchased last-minute tickets for the 16-hour flight to Cuba, (5) ____________________________ find out after takeoff that he had not boarded the aircraft. Reports are that Snowden is heading for Ecuador, (6) ____________________________. The Snowden (7) ____________________________ tensions between the USA, and China and Russia. Washington is furious that China allowed Snowden to leave Hong Kong for Russia earlier this week. US Secretary of State John Kerry (8) ____________________________ Russia to extradite Snowden back to the US. Mr Putin told reporters: "Mr Snowden has not crossed the state's border, and (9) ____________________________ a visa. Furthermore, (10) ____________________________ Russia of aiding him are ravings and rubbish." He explained that the US and Russia had not (11) ____________________________ and that he would not hand Snowden over to the US. Mr Kerry (12) ____________________________, "there are standards of behaviour between sovereign nations".

COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. What did the article say is continuing regarding Edward Snowden? Which of Snowden's ex-employees was mentioned? What did the article say Snowden gave the media? How many journalists boarded a plane to Cuba? What dismayed the journalists? Why is the USA angry with China? What is John Kerry trying to do? What doesn't Snowden need (according to Vladimir Putin)? Why won't Putin hand Snowden over?

10. Why does Kerry think Russia should hand over Snowden?

MULTIPLE CHOICE - QUIZ


1. What did the article say is continuing regarding Edward Snowden? a) a drawn-out saga b) escapades c) an international manhunt d) his travels around the world 6. Why is the USA angry with China?

2. Which of Snowden's ex-employers 7. was mentioned? a) the NSA b) Britain's MI5 c) the KGB d) the CIA

a) China let Snowden fly to Moscow b) China stole Snowden's secrets c) China thinks Snowden is a hero d) China disagrees with the USA What is John Kerry trying to do?

a) sign an extradition treaty with Russia b) go to Moscow airport c) extradite Snowden d) make friends with Russia and China 3. What did the article say Snowden 8. What doesn't Snowden need gave the media? (according to Vladimir Putin)? a) his full story a) a Russian visa b) a laptop computer b) an armed escort c) the slip c) a US passport d) leaked documents d) to worry 4. How many journalists boarded a 9. Why won't Putin hand Snowden plane to Cuba? over? a) about 30 a) he believes Snowden is b) 16 innocent c) a plane-load b) he wants Snowden's d) 215 information c) he dislikes the USA d) there's no extradition treaty between the USA and Russia 5. What dismayed the journalists? 10. Why does Kerry think Russia should hand over Snowden? a) the age of the plane a) to help US-Russian relations b) Snowden wasn't on the flight b) to protect American secrets c) there was no inflight food c) because of international d) the number of guns on the standards of plane behaviour

d) because Snowden is dangerous

From VOA Learning English, this is As It Is. Welcome to the show. Im Caty Weaver. Today, two reports about the environment. One explores climate conditions during the first ten years of the 21st century. The other investigates wholeecosystems on tiny pieces of plastic in the NorthAtlantics Sargasso Sea. A new report says the world experienced"unprecedented" climate extremes between 2000 to 2010. Now, international organizations are preparing tohelp nations deal with expected effe cts of a changing climate. Kelly Jean Kelly reports. The World Meteorological Organization, or WMO, produced the report. Itexamined world and local temperatures, rainfall and other precipitation duringthe first ten y ears of this century. It found that all of the years of the decade,except 2008, were among the ten warmest since records began more than150 y ears ago. The report also looked at extreme events including heat waves in Europe andRussia and H urricane Katrina in the United States. The investigators also reviewed droughts in the Amazon Basin, East Africa and Australia as well asfloods in Pakistan. Omar Baddour from the World Meteorological Organization says the reportshows the extent of recent climate ch ange. There is some dramatic change in the state of the climate and it is beingobserved in the present years as well. Mr. Baddour says some extreme weather events can be explained by naturalchanges. But, he says, rising amounts of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere are also changing the climate. Bob Ward is with the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics. He says the problemscreated by weather extremes are made worse by the way the world is changing. He says the growth of cities is increasing the danger.

If you look around the world in Asia and in parts of Africa, which are developing quickly, we're seeing large areas of population gathering in cities that are located on coastlines and they are particularly vulnerable to extremeweather. The WMO report says 370,000 people died as a result of extreme weather events during the ten-year period. That was up 20 percent from the 1990s. The increase was mostly the result of severe heat waves in Europe in 2003 and Russia in 2010. The report says deaths from drought and storms fell from 2000 to 2010. It says people were better prepared for these events than in the past. Bob Ward says such preparation for climate change will be increasingly important in the years to come. No matter how well we reduce emissions over the next three or fourdecades, we're committed to a degree of climate change in any case over that period. And to help people adapt and make themselves as resilient aspossible, they need information ab out how the climate may change. He says making sure climate change information is communicated quicklycan help prevent human disasters. The WMO says 70 nations have little or no climate services to spread climate and weather information. The 70 countries include most of the least developed nations. WMO official Wayne Elliot is working to start such services in Burkina Faso, Mali, Chad and Niger. He says in Niger, seasonal predictions are helpingfarmers to plan. There is a lot of information if tailored correctly for farmers that they can useto plan, for example, what types of seed, when they seed, when they water,when they need to think about harvesting crops, etc., around dry spells andaround the rainfalls arriving as well. World Meteorological Organization Secretary General Michel Jarraud says thenew report di sproves the belief among some scientists that global warming isslowing. Im Kelly Jean Kelly. The world's oceans contain large amounts of plastic waste. Plastic bags, bottles and other trash float with the currents and can harm fish and othermarine life. Some get trapped in it. Others eat it and get sick. However, for afew ocean organisms, the plastic trash becomes home. Scientists havediscovered a wide mix of microbes that ma ke colonies of life on plastic. JimTedder has our story.

It takes about six weeks for a plastic bottle or bag to ride the surface currents from the coastal United States to the Sargasso Sea, in the center of the North Atlantic. The area is a gyre, an area of water that circles around and around, trapping the plastic trash in the currents. Unlike other waste found in the ocean, the plastic does not break down. Microbiologist Tracey Mincer with Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute inMassachusetts is i nterested in this long term trash. He, and scientists from the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, joined students on a boat trip to the Sargasso Sea. They collected plastic from the water to check it for microbes. We hypothesized that the microbes on plastic were specifically interacting with it for a reason. The team used electron scanning tools and gene sequencing techniques toclosely examine the plastic. Tracey Mincer says they found rich colonies ofbacteria. The microbiologist says the organisms in this so-called plastisphere were different from those in the surrounding water, which is lacking in nutrients. He says this suggests that the plastic acts as a microbial reef. He says it couldshelter diseasecausing organisms and other harmful algal species. A lot of times certain toxins are oily in nature and they will absorb onto theplastic, but when the microbes interact with it and could be releasing those toxins off of the plastic. Some of those additives to plastic are known to have hormonal effects inhumans. More than 90 percent of the trash floating on the ocean surface is plastic. Tracy Mincer says it is important to learn how the plastic affects marinespecies because there is a lot of it in the water. Fish are eating the plastic. And are they picking up certain toxins from the plastic or not? The scientist says this first investigation identified about 1,000 microbes thatlive on and interact with plastic. The research is published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Im Jim Tedder.

And thats As It Is for today. Im Caty Weaver. Thanks for joining us.