Not a day goes by without the looming threat of global warming being mentioned, either in the media or in general conversation. With that being said, it is unfortunately all too common for people nowadays to have the mentality that environmental damage is still a long way away and our generation won’t be affected. Truth be told, it seems that some simply can’t be bothered to do things like separate their plastic from their paper. That being said, measures have been taken to protect the environment over the past 5 years. More recycling programmes have been put into place in every corner of the world, not forgetting the influx of eco-friendly vehicles which came about a few years ago. Hopefully, with more campaigns and more education about the dangers, the lazy attitude of some will begin to vanish and they can acknowledge that we need to do our bit to protect our future generations and families and if everyone does a little, it can help a lot. Today, we travel to Crostherland, a small town in SouthWest England which has been voted the “Greenest City” in United Kingdom by National Geographic magazine. It’s fair to say that the citizens of this town have fully embraced the eco-friendly way of life. We look forward to talking to some inhabitants about what they have done to deserve this title and what they think others need to do to follow suit. First up, we grab resident’s association chairman Pat Dooble for a chat.
INTERVIEWER: Hi Pat. I suppose congratulations are in order! Well done, tell me what Crostherland does to stand out from other eco friendly towns and cities
PAT: Hi! Well, I think one thing that we have going for us is the fact that we are all in it together. There is not one person in the town who isn’t willing to pitch in when it comes to environmental issues. It is that shared mentality of togetherness and caring that makes us special.
INTERVIEWER: That’s such a refreshing attitude for so many people to have. You must be very proud of your community. So what environmentally friendly systems do you have in place?
PAT: Well, for one, our carbon emissions are low because we don’t use cars. We have safe pedestrian routes and a cycling system which allows people to rent bikes. We can also get around on public transport. There is a bus stop within a 10-minute walking radius of each home.
INTERVIEWER: Very effective. What about things like water usage and recycling?
PAT: We are very proud of our recycling system. We have handed out 4 bins to each house, with the aim of separating all recyclable materials from general rubbish. We have one bin for plastic, one for tins and glass, one for paper, one for garden waste and one for general waste. As for water usage, this mostly comes down to relying on our neighbours. We are a tight-knit community so we do trust each other completely. We ask people to take showers more often than baths, turn off the tap when brushing their teeth and only use hosepipes on the garden once a month. These are the simple things that we are all aware of, but if we all come together to enforce them, it can have a big effect.
INTERVIEWER: Has anyone ever complained that the environment focused factors are taking too much precedence over the running of this town?
PAT: Obviously we can’t completely govern people’s lives, but we had a unanimous vote 5 years ago to make this town an eco town and now any new residents are explicitly informed about what we expect here when they move into the area. There have been no complaints so far!
Our team walked around Crostherland when the interview with Pat was over. We had been slightly dubious about how much control the eco systems seemed to have over the lives of the residents here. However, any doubts we had were wiped away by the happiness that the town exudes. Everybody is happy to live here and help our planet in the process. Citizens of Crostherland, we salute you!
a menace, an intent to hurt
to make an effort
to pitch in
(figurative) to participate, to join in
(idea, change) new and different
refuse, rubbish, garbage
to take precedence over
to have priority
doubting, sceptical, suspicious
Reading and Use of English 6: Gapped Text
Gapped Text Activity
Reading and Use of English part 6 is called Gapped Text. Here the primary emphasis is on text structure, coherence and cohesion, as well as a candidate’s ability to follow a long text’s development.
You are given a text with 6 gaps as well as 7 sentences, 6 of which have been removed from the text, and 1 sentence which does not belong and must not be used. These 7 sentences are placed under the text in jumbled order.
This activity type tests the candidate’s ability to understand a text’s structure, in order terms how ideas are developed, opinions are presented, and how they are linked through cohesion devices such as linking words. This is often considered one of the hardest activities.