Learning English

Why we forget the things we learn

  • Why is Super Mario so popular?

  • Should fast food sponsor sport?

  • Introduction

    Climate change is reaching emergency levels. Some people think the best option is renewable energy. Others prefer a return to nuclear energy, arguing that it’s clean, green and more reliable that renewables. But after the infamous nuclear disasters at Chernobyl and Fukushima, questions about its safety remain. Neil and Sam talk about nuclear energy, as they teach you related vocabulary.

    This week's question

    Many of the nuclear power stations built since the 1960s are reaching the end of their planned life, and not everyone thinks they should be replaced. In 2011, one country announced that it would phase out – meaning gradually stop using - nuclear power altogether. But which country?

    a) Germany

    b) India

    c) Brazil

    Listen to the programme to find out the answer.

    Vocabulary

    renewables

    types of energy such as wind and solar power that can be replaced as quickly as they are used

    phase (something) out

    gradually stop using (something)

    vivid memories

    memories that produce powerful feelings and strong, clear images in the mind

    ingrained

    (beliefs) so strongly held that they are difficult to change 

    unique selling point 

    (or USP)

    the feature of something that makes it different from and better than its competitors  

    casualty

    person or thing that suffers as a result of something else happening

    Transcript

    Note: This is not a word-for-word transcript

    Neil

    Hello. This is 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English. I’m Neil.

    Sam

    And I’m Sam. 

    Neil

    With winter here, the rising price of oil and natural gas has become a hot topic.

    Sam

    At the same time, climate change is also reaching emergency levels, and world leaders are looking for ways to reduce our consumption of fossil fuels. Some think the best option is 

    renewables – types of natural energy, such as wind and solar power, which can be replaced as quickly as they are used. 

    Neil

    Others prefer a return to nuclear energy, arguing that it’s clean, green and more reliable that renewables. But after infamous nuclear disasters like those at Chernobyl and Fukushima, questions about its safety remain.

    Sam

    In this programme, we’ll be finding out how green nuclear power is by asking: when it comes to the climate, is nuclear a friend or foe?

    Neil

    But before that, Sam, it’s time for my quiz question. Many of the nuclear power stations built since the 1960s are reaching the end of their planned life, and not everyone thinks they should be replaced. In 2011, one country announced that it would 

    phase out – meaning gradually stop using - nuclear power altogether. But which country? Was it:

    a)    Germany?

    b)    India?   or,

    c)    Brazil?

    Sam

    I’ll go with a) Germany.

    Neil

    OK, Sam. We’ll reveal the correct answer later in the programme.

    Sam

    As Neil mentioned, whatever the advantages of nuclear power for the climate, many members of the public have concerns about nuclear safety.

    Neil

    Probably the most well-known nuclear accident happened on the 26th of April 1986 at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Soviet Ukraine.

    Sam

    Dutch journalist Mirjam Vossen reflects on what happened with BBC World Service programme, The Real Story.

    Mirjam Vossen

    The perceptions of nuclear energy of, I think, a whole generation has been shaped by high impact events, most notably the Chernobyl disaster… including myself. I have

     vivid memories of how the media reported on this event and how scary it was and how frightened everyone was of the radioactive clouds drifting from the Ukraine towards Europe. So, this is, sort of, 

    ingrained in people’s minds, and for many it hasn’t been … really been updated.

    Neil

    It was a frightening time, and Mirjam says she has 

    vivid memories – memories that produce powerful feelings and strong, clear images in the mind. 

    Sam

    The accident in Chernobyl changed many people’s opinions of nuclear power in a negative way, and these opinions became 

    ingrained -

     strongly held and difficult to change. But Mirjam believes these ingrained public perceptions of nuclear safety are out-of-date. She argues that such accidents caused by human error could not happen in the modern nuclear power stations used today. 

    Neil

    What’s more, nuclear creates a steady supply of power - unlike renewables, which don’t make electricity when the wind doesn’t blow, or the Sun doesn’t shine.

    Sam

    So maybe nuclear power is the greenest way of generating energy without fossil fuels.

    Neil

    Well, not according to Energy Institute researcher Paul Dorfman. Nuclear power stations are located near seas or large lakes because they need water to cool down. Paul thinks that soon rising seas levels will mean the end of nuclear as a realistic energy option.

    Sam

    He thinks money invested in nuclear upgrades would be better spent making clean renewables more reliable instead, as he explained to BBC World Service programme, The Real Story 

    Paul Dorfman

    I think the key takeaway is that nuclear’s low carbon electricity 

    unique selling point kind of sits in the context of a much larger picture that nuclear will be one of the first and most significant 

    casualties to ramping climate change. So, nuclear’s quite literally on the front line of climate change and not in a good way – that’s because far from helping with our climate change problems, it’ll add to it.

    Neil

    One advantage of nuclear power is that it produces electricity using little carbon. Paul Dorfman calls this its 

    unique selling point

    Sam

    A

     unique selling point, which is sometimes shortened to ‘USP’, is a common way to describe the feature of something that makes it different from and better than its competitors.

    Neil

    But that doesn’t change the fact that rising sea levels would make nuclear an unrealistic, even dangerous, choice. This is why he calls nuclear power a 

    casualty of climate change, meaning a victim, or something that suffers as a result of something else happening.

    Sam

    This also explains why some countries are now turning away from nuclear power towards more renewable energy sources – countries such as… well, what was the answer to your quiz question, Neil?

     

    Neil

    I asked Sam which country decided to gradually stop using nuclear power.

    Sam

    I said a) Germany.

    Neil

    Which was the correct answer! In fact, around 70% of Germany’s electricity now comes from 

    renewables.

    Sam

    OK, Neil, let’s recap the rest of the vocabulary from this programme, starting with to 

    phase something out, meaning to gradually stop using something.

    Neil

    Vivid memories are memories that produce powerful feelings and strong mental images.

    Sam

    Opinions and beliefs which are 

    ingrained are so strongly held that they are difficult to change.

    Neil

    Something’s 

    unique selling point

    or USP, is the feature that makes it different from and better than its competitors.

    Sam

    And finally, a 

    casualty is a person or thing that suffers as a result of something else happening.

    Neil

    That’s all for this look into nuclear and renewable energy.

    Sam

    Bye for now!

    Neil

    Goodbye!

    Source : https://www.bbc.com/learningenglish/burmese/features/6-minute-english/ep-211125

    1573
    Filed Under: BBC
    Global Digital English Language Learning Market 2021 Key Regions, Major Manufacturers Performance, Value Chain and Sales Channels Analysis 2027

    Source:MarketWatch

    Global Digital English Language Learning Market 2021 Key Regions, Major Manufacturers Performance, Value Chain and Sales Channels Analysis 2027

    GreatSchools.org adds data on school culture, learning environment to profiles of 1,700+ New York City public schools

    Source:Business Insider

    GreatSchools.org adds data on school culture, learning environment to profiles of 1,700+ New York City public schools

    Subtitles Are An Integral Part Of The Immigrant Experience – They Helped Me Learn English

    Source:Yahoo Finance

    Subtitles Are An Integral Part Of The Immigrant Experience – They Helped Me Learn English