CAE Reading and Use of English Part 6
You are going to read four extracts from articles in which experts give their views on climate
change. For questions 37-40, choose from the reviews A-D. The reviews may be chosen more than once.
Can We Reduce Climate Change?
Four experts give their views on whether it is possible to mitigate the effects of global climate change.
The extreme weather conditions experienced in recent years are a clear indication that global warming is underway, and that future climate patterns will certainly follow the trajectory predicted unless measures are taken to lessen the impact of fossil fuel use. And yet the scenario is not as hopeless as many fear. Figures show that nations which are undergoing rapid economic growth are indeed causing a sizeable upsurge in global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at the present time. However, the GHG per person of these regions is currently still far below that of much of the world, and with their adoption of increasingly efficient technologies, it is unlikely that their GHG per person will ever equal that of Europe or North America. Indeed, my view is that the growing pace of scientific advancement will eventually find the means to mitigate and even reverse the consequences of climate change.
There is no doubt that increasing industrialisation has had a measurable impact on GHG emissions, with consequences for climate and the environment. As for the future, however, even the most expert calculations are no more than speculation. What is more, even if the situation were to reach the catastrophic proportions that some foresee, this will not herald the end of life on earth as we know it. There have been many great climatic variations throughout history, and life forms have always adapted and survived. I see no reason why this period of change should be any different. And in the shorter term, it seems likely that GHG emissions will soon stabilise. The technologies to harness wind, wave and solar power have been in place for many years now, and as oil and gas become ever scarcer, markets will inevitably switch to more efficient and renewable resources.
Despite recommendations from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, only a handful of countries have achieved any reduction in GHG emissions in recent years, while many developing countries have massively increased their fossil fuel use and hence their GHG emissions. It also seems probable that these levels will go on rising for decades, eclipsing any potential reductions elsewhere in the world. And while some sceptics question the accuracy of climate change forecasting, one cannot ignore the fact that most models produce strikingly similar results. This, to my mind, is evidence enough that something should be done. The potential consequences of failing to heed the warning signs is another question entirely. Even if it is too late to reverse the effects of global warming, I believe that the natural environment, and all its complex relationships, may eventually modify to cope with the changes. The earth is more resilient than we think.
One only has to look at the world’s GHG levels to realise that climate change is a real and urgent issue. Forecasts made in previous decades – anticipating hurricanes, floods and record temperatures – have proved correct, indicating that models of future trends are also likely to be accurate. Countries becoming newly industrialised are producing GHG emissions to such an extent as to erode all other countries’ efforts to stabilise the world’s temperature. This situation is likely to continue for some years yet. Thus, from melting polar caps to devastated rainforests and rising sea levels, our environment and the ecosystems they support are in grave danger. The key to averting potential catastrophe, I feel, lies in human ingenuity. For example, more efficient coal power stations already generate a third less emissions than conventional ones. Man has engineered this situation, and has the capacity – and incentive – to devise inventions to confront it.
Which expert …
37 expresses a different opinion from C about the extent to which fossil fuels will continue to be used?
38 has a different view from D on the contribution of developing countries to climate change?
39 holds a different view from all the other experts on the reliability of climate change predictions?
40 has the same view as B about whether ecosystems will adjust to the consequences of climate change?
CAE Reading and Use of English Part 7
You are going to read a magazine article about rock climbing. Six paragraphs have been removed from the article. Choose from the paragraphs A – G the one which fits each gap (41-46). There is one extra paragraph which you do not need to use.
On the northern coast of Oman, climbers test themselves against knife-edge cliffs
We’re standing on a pebble beach in northern Oman with a group of local men who are fishing.
Behind us rises a sheer 1,000-metre cliff that shimmers under a blistering midday sun. ‘Do you
mind if I look around?’ Alex asks. ‘You can do as you please’, says the elder. As Alex wanders off, we explain to the Althouri fishermen that we’re professional rock climbers on an exploratory visit.
There are six of us in our team, including Alex, one of the best young climbers in the world.
Suddenly one of the men stops in his tracks, points up at the towering cliff, and starts shouting. A thousand feet above us Alex is climbing, antlike, up the rock wall. The Althouris are beside themselves with a mix of excitement and incredulity
In 28 years of climbing I’ve never seen rock formations as magical. In places the land rises straight from the ocean in knife-edged fins. Proximity to the sea makes these cliffs perfect for deepwater soloing, a specialized type of climbing in which you push up as far a wall as you can, then simply tumble into the water. It sounds harmless enough, but an out-of-control fall can result in serious injury or even death.
Wasting no time, Alex laces up his climbing shoes, dives from the boat, and swims to a cliff where the ocean has carved out a cavern with a five-metre overhang. Within minutes he has reached the cavern’s ceiling, where he finds a series of tiny hand holds along a protruding rib of dark grey limestone. It’s exactly the kind of challenge he has been looking for, with every move more difficult than the one before.
‘Come on!’ I scream, urging him to finish his new route. Alex lunges over the lip, but his legs swing out, and he peels off the rock and leaps into the water. That night we anchor in the bay at the base of a 150-metre Gothic tower we dub the ‘sandcastle: Before joining Alex for the climb the next morning, I suggest we take along safety gear. The young climber scoffs, saying that it’s nothing more than a hike. I think of myself as a young 44-year-old, but trying to keep up with him makes me realise how old I’m getting .
And now I’m slightly annoyed again about his disregard for whether I’m comfortable. The rock here is badly shattered, what climbers call choss. Clinging to the dead-vertical wall, I test the integrity of each hold by banging it with the heel of my hand. Sometimes the rock sounds hollow or even moves. Staring down between my legs, I see the boat bobbing in the bay far beneath us. By the time I plop down on the ledge beside him, my nerves are frazzled.
As I turn to my youthful partner for his thoughts, I see he’s already packed up. For him the moment of wonder has passed. ‘Let’s go’, Alex says impatiently. ‘If we hurry, we can get in another climb before dark’.
A From there we sail toward the ‘Lion’s Mouth’, a narrow strait named for the fang-like red
and orange limestone pillars that jut from an overhang at its entrance. Alex spends the day working on a 60-metre route up one of the pillars.
B ‘What are they saying?’ I ask our translator. ‘It’s hard to explain’, he replies. ‘But essentially, they think Alex is a witch’. I can understand why. Even for me, Alex’s skills are hard to grasp. But so is this landscape.
C The claw-like fingers of the Musandam Peninsula below glow orange with the setting sun. Looking down at the tortuous shoreline, which fans out in every direction, we’re gazing at a lifetime’s worth of climbing.
D One of the other places we thought would be perfect for visiting by boat is As Salamah, an island in the Strait of Hormuz. We arrive in early afternoon and discover a giant rock rising from the sea. Since there is nowhere to anchor, we drop the sails and use the engines to park the boat just offshore.
E I’d already had a similar moment of awareness earlier in the trip when Alex had scampered up a 500-metre wall with our rope in his pack. ‘Hold on a second!’ I’d yelled. What if the rest of us needed it? ‘Don’t worry’, he’d replied. ‘I’ll stop when I think we need to start using the ropes.
F The men puff on the pipes and nod. The mountainous peninsula on which they live is an intricate maze of bays and fjords. Few climbers have ever touched its sheer limestone cliffs. We had learned of the area’s potential from some British climbers who visited ten years ago.
G Some defy belief. Hanging upside down, holding on to bumps in the rock no bigger than matchboxes, Alex hooks the heels of his sticky-soled shoes over a small protrusion. Defying gravity, he lets go with one hand and snatches for the next hold. Then the rock becomes too slick for a heel hook so he dangles his legs and swings like a chimpanzee from one tiny ledge to the next.