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英语练功房

Challenge both your English & minds

 
 
 

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0520  

2008-05-21 14:21:07|  分类: Lectures |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Nature is turning on us

The last few years have seen _______________( environment) disasters ______ a grand scale, and experts are predicting far worse to come. Jin Li reports on our changeable weather patterns.

In the last decade, thunderstorms, floods, earthquakes, typhoons, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis and forest fires have become increasingly common. There has been terrible flooding in Asia, Africa, America and Oceania. Even Europe has suffered and large areas have been underwater. Storms have been getting worse everywhere too, with a _________(grow) number of hurricanes hitting the US, and Central America. ___________(Reduce) rainfall has affected large areas of Africa for years __________(leave) irrigation canals dry and many other zones are becoming drier. For example, the Yellow River , once famous for flooding, failed to reach the sea at all for 226 days in 1977. A number of nations have already been in armed conflict ______water. and reduced rainfall in the west of the US has resulted in huge forest fires.

So why is nature beginning to turn ____ us? One answer is ____________. The population of the world is growing at the disturbing rate of 10,000 people an hour, nearly 90 million a year, with most of the growth in the developing world. People in agricultural areas, without any means to earn their living, move to the cities, and then construct shabby homes from _________ materials they can find on poor clay soil. These homes, seldom made ___ bricks, can easily fall down in earthquakes or slip and slide downhill in landslides, especially in mountainous areas. _____top of that ad global warming. This has mainly been caused by the huge amounts of carbon dioxide produced by factories and vehicles, and the destruction of the world’s forests. _______ a result, a hotter ocean causes more powerful winds. Atlantic hurricanes --- their howling winds with speeds of over 300 kilometers an hour--- are 40% stronger now than they were 30 years ago.

 Volcanoes and earthquakes are even more __________(danger) than in the past as around half the world’s population now lives in cities. There are more than 300 active volcanoes, about fifty of _______ erupt each year, and more than 500 million people now live within the range of a volcanic eruption. Because these natural disasters occur ____ random times, it is difficult to warn people in advance. In May 2006, thousands of Indonesians ________(live) near Mt Merapi had to flee as they thought it was about to erupt. An even greater number of people live at risk , to some _______, from earthquakes which have claimed more than 1.6 million lives in the last hundred years.

Most disasters experts believe there is the potential that things could get a lot worse. Professor Hou Ming, of Bejing University studies volcanoes and he warns that the world has not seen the worst nature can do. The _______(bad) eruption in human history was probably Mt Tambora in 1815, in Indonesia. Dust from the volcano________(roll) across the Earth’s skies and pretty much cancelled the following summer in Europe and America. It reduced temperatures by maybe 6c in some place and the whole planet __________(send) into winter for years. And there are about two of these events every 100,000 years…

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