Reuse Reduce Recycle



Activity 1

Watch the following video about environmental issues caused by mankind. There are no words, the whole story is told through images. Your task is to write a short summary about what you have seen and also state the moral of the story.




Activity 2

Your town council wants to build a casino and replace a popular park in the centre of the town next month. This will destroy the natural habitat of hundreds of species. You want to organize a protest against it but you only have a £1.000 budget. Discuss the best way of doing this with a partner. Use the ideas below and make a plan. Finally, present your plan to the rest of the class.

Organize a meeting

✓ People can exchange ideas

✗We have £1,000 – is this the best way to use it?

Organize a protest march

✓ Very effective; local media interest

✗ If the weather is bad, few people will come

Advertise in the local newspaper

✓ A lot of people could see our advert

✗We have £1,000 – is this the best way to use it?

Make a video and upload it to the internet

✓ Young people would hear about the protest

✗ We need a video camera, which is expensive!


 Useful expressions

Asking for opinions                               Agreeing on a plan

  •     What do you think about … ?  •    OK, let’s …
  •     Do you think … would work?   •    I’d go along with …
  •     What’s your opinion of … ?      •    I’d be happy to …


Activity 3

Surf the web and find at least three different environmental problems. Explain their negative effects on our planet and give some advice on how to tackle them.




Activity 4

Read the following text and test your comprehension by answering the questions below. Remember to use your own words and complete sentences.

Setting a good example?

A    For a lot of people, there is no doubt: the environmental changes that are happening are caused by human activity. Over 200 years of industrialization have had a very negative effect on the planet. Water and air pollution, a growing number of endangered species, and the loss of natural resources are just a few of the consequences.

B    These environmental problems are mostly the responsibility of Western countries. However, during the nineteenth century and most of the twentieth century, nobody was aware of the damage that we were causing. Now, the situation is different and ecologists in the West are warning that the new industrial nations in the developing world are damaging the planet too.

C    Over the last 30 years, people in the West have adopted a number of ‘green’ habits. Many people recycle materials, and leave their cars at home and cycle to work. However, the same people also listen to MP3 players or talk on mobile phones. In fact, thanks to the dramatic increase in the use of electronic gadgets, instead of reducing their carbon footprint, people in the UK are using 20% more energy at home than they were 20 years ago.

D    Our love of gadgets has no end, and the sale of these energy-consuming devices is going to increase in the near future. According to the Energy Saving Trust, in Britain, 45% of the electricity used in homes in 2020 will be powering computers and electronic gadgets. The International Energy Agency has predicted that the amount of energy used globally to power gadgets will have increased by 100% between 2009 and 2022. Perhaps before warning others about their environmentally damaging practices, we should first make a genuine effort to stop our own.


1   What do a lot of people think are causing the changes to the environment?






2   Why are most environmental problems today the responsibility of Western countries?






3   What have people in the West been doing over the last 30 years?






4   What has been the result of our love of gadgets?






5   What is the writer’s conclusion?







Activity 5

How much do you know about recycling? Can all materials be recycled? Classify the following items into recyclable or non-recyclable. Finally, propose what can be done with the non-recyclable ones.


Tissues, Newspapers, Green glass, Wine glasses, Milk cartons, Aluminum cans, Diapers, Plastic bags, Kitchen roll, Empty aerosols, Batteries











Activity 6

Complete the sentences with a word formed from the words in the box. Be careful, there are two words you don’t need.

able   real   build   different   pollute   destroy


1   The __________________ of habitats is a major reason why many species are dying out.


2   We don’t understand the hard __________________ of the life of people in poor countries.


3   We haven’t got the __________________ to stop natural disasters.


4   I don’t see the __________________ between gas and oil. Neither are clean forms of energy.










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