photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 05 January 2017

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New Year’s Fireworks Blamed for Sharp Rise in Pollution

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • spike: a sudden rise
  • toxin: something that causes pollution or health hazards
  • atmosphere: gases surrounding the earth
  • restriction: limit
  • hazardous: dangerous to one’s health and safety
  • smog: smoke and fog that pollutes the atmosphere

New Year’s Fireworks Blamed for Sharp Rise in Pollution

Several cities in reported air pollution spikes following their New Year’s Eve firework celebrations. According to a national estimate in Germany, the fireworks 4,000 tonnes of toxins (smoke and soot) into the atmosphere. In Munich, levels rose 26 times higher than the safe level recommended by the European Union. Environmentalists say that more restrictions of fireworks are required worldwide, especially during special events such as , Guy Fawkes Night, and Diwali. The toxins from fireworks pollute waterways and contribute to hazardous smog in the .

Comprehension Questions

  1. According to the report, when and where was air pollution a major health concern recently?
  2. What do environmentalists have to say about this issue?
  3. Why does the report mention Diwali?

Discussion Questions: Do you like celebrating with fireworks? Should large firework displays be banned or restricted in major cities in order to protect the environment?

show Answers

Written and recorded by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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