Make a list of words used to describe the changes that swept the town.
Give a brief outline of the text.
TOPICS FOR TEXT DISCUSSION:
1. Discuss the epigraphs to the text. Tell the group how you understand them. State whether you agree or disagree with them.
2. Comment on the title of the story.
3. The description of the town easily falls into two parts: what the town used to be like (the first two paragraphs) and what suddenly became of it. the description ends with the words: 'No witchcraft, no enemy action... The people had done it themselves/ What is the message of these lines?
4. What other problems is the environment pollution linked with?
5. Make a semantic map of the text.
6. Analyze the text from the stylistic point of view.
Modern society has a gargantuan appetite for energy! Industry requires a constant, reliable and, preferably, inexpensive supply of electrical energy in order to be able to produce the goods which developed nations' demand. Technological innovations have accelerated the need for efficient energy transfer on a massive scale.
GROW TREES TO DRIVE CARS
The best way to make the UK's road transport green could be a massive tree-growing programme, researchers say. They say there is considerable potential for producing hydrogen and alcohol fuels from fast-growing trees like willows.
A quarter of all the UK's agricultural land would be enough to fuel the country's entire road transport sector, they believe. But they say it will be several decades before hydrogen is a sensible choice as a transport fuel.
The researchers are from three think-tanks: the Energy Saving Trust, the Institute for European Environmental Policy, and the National Society for Clean Air (NSCA). They have produced a report, Fuelling Road Transport - Implications for Energy Policy.
Tackling the problem.
In it they argue that the rapid expansion of hydrogen as a fuel for transport could in fact damage the environment rather than help it. This is partly because electricity is needed to produce hydrogen from a source containing carbon, and there is a net loss of energy in converting it for use in motor vehicles.
But another reason, the report says, is because there are greater savings in emissions to be made by using electricity from renewable sources to replace old power stations. One of the authors, Richard Mills, said: "There is no doubt that, long-term, the transport sector could use substantial amounts of hydrogen from renewables." But in the medium term hydrogen will come from natural gas. It would make more sense to burn that gas directly in vehicles. A premature 'dash for hydrogen' could have an environmental downside, which can be avoided by encouraging the more efficient use of petrol and diesel hybrid technologies, and developing transport fuels from biomass."
Tim Brown, an environment expert, said: 'You'll get a bigger bang for your carbon buck by taking out old, inefficient power stations." The report says there is enormous potential for using biomass - vegetable matter - to make fuel for road vehicles. It says: "Biomass offers a cheaper and earlier route than renewable electricity to reducing carbon emissions via a hydrogen-fuelled transport system.
"As an indication of the potential contribution, 25% of UK agricultural land planted with indigenous wood crops converted to methanol, ethanol or hydrogen could in the long term satisfy most or even all UK road transport fuel demand. This outcome would, however, be dependent on relative costs and a large number of technical factors." The authors stress they are not suggesting turning over a quarter of Britain's farmland to providing fuel, but simply pointing out how easy it would be to produce enough. The report says there are "compelling environmental and strategic arguments for reducing the carbon intensity of the UK energy mix, and in particular the road transport sector, which is uniquely oil-dependent." (http://www.nytimes.com)
Answer the questions to the text.
1. According to the text what is the best way to make the UK's road transport green? Why?
2. Why could hydrogen as a fuel for transport damage the environment rather than help it? Provide all aspects of the problem.
3. What alternative to hydrogen-fueled transport system is provided in the text?
4. Why is the carbon intensity of the UK energy mix called 'compelling' by the author of the text?
5. What measures provided in the text could be adopted in Russia? Give your reasons.
Did you know:In central London forty thousand cars every hour use the roads! Comment on the fact.
Some scientists argue that hydrogen-fuel cell cars are the best substitute for modern oil-dependent transport system. Is it really so?