Collection of english workouts

standing: 29.05.1997



1.1 What's the Internet?

That question is rather difficult to answer because the Internet is so many things to so many different people. It's simply a series of computer networks linked together all over the world, communicating almost all the time with one another.
A single network of computers, is for example, all the computers linked together within our school building. The Internet consists of thousands of these networks communicating together, like a big net or web! University networks connected to government networks connected to business networks connected to private networks - this is the Internet! These computer networks are physically linked together by telephone, radio, cable lines or via satellite. Networks from other continents are interconnected by the large, intercontinental telephone and fibre optic communication lines that run below the ocean floor.

1.2 Size of the Internet

Nobody knows for sure how big the Internet is. It is estimated that there are approximately thirty to thirty - eight million people that are ‘on - line,’ with sites on every continent. In fact, the Internet has grown at an exponential rate since its beginning.
It is the largest network of computers in the world and is growing at about ten percent per month. That means that at the current rate of growth, the Internet - users will double just ten months from today. If you believe current predictions, it will become true that by the year 2010 everyone of the western countries will be connected to the Internet.

1.3 History and Property

The Internet began as ARPANET (Advanced Research Projects Agency - Network), a US military network in the 1960s. The United States military needed a system for its researchers to communicate and share programs with one another over long distances. In other parts of the world, similar networks developed.
Over time, all these separate networks have linked together using a common communication protocol called TCP/IP. Businesses and private individuals then started connecting and eventually the network became known as the Internet. Today, no individual, no corporation and no government owns the Internet - it is owned, operated and maintained by all those who use it.


1.4.1 E - Mail

Perhaps the first step that many people have tried when using the Internet is E - mail. E - Mail is a method of sending text and pictures to other people on the net. It is an electronic message from a sender to a recipient, (or multiple recipients.) Some people say that an email message is the Internet equivalent of sending a fax. Compared to postal E - mail, (often called ‘snail - mail’ by Internet users), E - mail is probably much faster. But there are several problems with E - mail.
In theory, messages can be sent back and forth immediately (usually within a few seconds), regardless of whether the message is sent to the next building or to the next continent. Nevertheless E - mail messages may sit in the recipient’s electronic mailbox for days or weeks until the user checks them. To be able to send an E - mail message, you must know the E - mail address of the person you want to send the message to.

A person's E - mail address is constructed from the username they use to login to their provider and the computer's Internet host name. By combining the two with an @ sign between, them you have created that user's E - mail address.

1.4.2 World Wide Web

I think it’s advantageous to start with the widely know service named WWW (which means World Wide Web). The World Wide Web makes up a very large percentage of the Internet. Nearly seventy percent of all information searches are handled through the World Wide Web. Information is quickly found in the World Wide Web through typing in key words. The key words are searched through different search engines, such as Infoseek and Lycos, or through search directories, such as Yahoo and Magellan. These search engines look for key words in their databases. The search results from the search engine are then listed and the user can choose from the titles found.

The WWW is a system for publishing text and pictures on the net so they can be accessed at any time by everybody who is interested in. You can compare the WWW with a library without walls, that is open 24 hours a day on 365/366 days a year.

WWW is often also simply mentioned as Web. Web Pages can include texts, pictures, sound - files, animation's, videos and so on. With the new language "Java", which is used for programming Web - pages, there are several more possibilities to design a Webpage.

Most people, who are not as well informed about the Internet, think that the WWW is, besides E - mail, the only service in the Internet. But there are several other services like the Usenet or the Internet Relay Chat.

1.4.3 Usenet

The third service is called Usenet. This is split into over 30000 groups called Newsgroups. In each of them, people can post messages to the group - topic. Almost everything on Usenet is a discussion of some sort, although a few groups are devoted to regular information postings, with no discussion allowed. Of course, you can always ask your question, and you usually get an answer, even if it's the sort of question everyone asks.

Common questions are called Frequently Asked Questions, or FAQs, and are collected in lists and posted regularly for newcomers. If you search for the Newsgroup of your interest, you will probably find it. For example, there are even some Newsgroups for collectors of butterflies.

1.5 How to connect to the Internet

For you and most people using a microcomputer such as a PC, a modem generally makes the necessary link to the Internet. Modem stands for modulator - demodulator, and it enables your computer to monopolise your phone. The fastest modem in commercial use today can process about 56 kilobits per second. A few years ago, the fastest modem available could only process 300 bits of information per second.

Nowadays, new connection methods like ISDN (Integrated Service Digital Network) are upcoming. ISDN lines can process information at 128 kilobits per second. The ISDN lines would be installed in place of telephone lines. Satellites are also used to transmit data to computers. Current satellites can process up to 400 kilobits per second. When you have the correct hardware you need an access provider which will handle the local link from your computer into the Internet.

In the Future coaxial cable TV lines will be used to get connected with the Internet because information can be processed at over 27 megabits per second on the same cable lines that are already used for TV.

1.6 Problems

The Internet is also used by criminals. For example you are able to get the terrorist handbook, pornographic material, nazi slogans as easy as the news of today. In the last time there have been a lot discussions if the Internet should be controlled. But there are also a lot of people who are against a censor of the Internet because they say you have the right for freedom of speech (it's a basic right!). Another problem is that the people are getting lonlier because they forget to communicate outside of the net.

Future - the wired world?

In just a few years, the Internet became a mass - medium. The Internet is now used by 36 million people and every month this number increases by 2 million. In 2010 nearly everybody of the western countries, like Austria, Germany, Switzerland, will be connected to the Internet.

1.8 Vocabulary

CB radio (city band)

fibre optic communication line
optische Glasfaserkommunikationsleitung
Gastgeber, hier: Server der Daten zur VerfĂŒgung stellt
ohne RĂŒcksicht auf
to delimit
to desire
to estimate


2.1 At the beginning

To be able to fly is one of the oldest human ambitions. Icarus, who was a legend, flew with feathers and wings out of wax too near the sun. So the wax melted and Icarus died. People in the ancient world tried to copy him, but all with disastrous results.
First, people thought that the way to fly would be to design a machine with flapping wings like a bird's. But the first people who took to the air did it with the help of a hot air balloon. Those people were the brothers Montgolfier from France. That happened at the end of the 18thcentury.
But balloons were at the mercy of the wind for their direction and speed, so they were no use as a means of transport. So Sir George Cayley designed the first successful passenger - carrying glider in the middle of the 19thcentury. He worked out the principle of ‘lift’, which is obtained by making the upper surface of the wing convex and keeps the wing airborne.
The greatest glider pioneer of the age, Otto Lilienthal, died after nearly 2000 flights in a glider he built himself.

2.2 Flying by steam

Other inventors tried making steam - powered aircraft. But the flights which could be made were only a few metres long. The people, who were responsible for the breakthrough in flying were two American brothers: Orville and Wilbur Wright. They lived in the 19thcentury.
The Wright - brothers ran a bicycle business. In their spare time they directed all their attention to aeronautics.
The Wrights saw that there were three problems in realizing their dream of a machine which could fly:
    The first problem was to make wings large enough to lift the weight of the engine and the passenger, and to keep the aircraft in the air. The second problem was to find the right engine. The third and most important problem was to work out ways of balancing and steering the aircraft in flight.

The Wrights saw that the solution was to provide their aircraft with controllable surfaces similar to those found on aircraft today. They fitted a movable elevator in front of the wings, and a movable tail fin which acted as a rudder. In the beginning of the 20thcentury, the Wrights began to build a powered flying machine.

Failure at Kitty Hawk

One year later the flying machine was ready to take off. Its name was Flyer I. The wingspan of Flyer I was twelve metres. It was powered by a four - cylinder petrol engine. The engine drove two wooden propellers fitted behind the wings. The pilot lay on his stomach. Flyer I had no wheeled undercarriage. It would take off from a set of wheels mounted on a rail track, and land on skids shaped like skis.

On a December - day, Wilbur Wright tried to take off. But he made a disastrous mistake. Flyer I could not take off and crashed into the sand hills near Kitty Hawk in North Carolina.
When the damages of Flyer I were repaired, it was Orville Wright’s turn to take off. His try was successful and the first powered flight was fourty - two metres long. On the same day they tried it again and again. The result was a 260 metres - long flight by Wilbur Wright. The top speed was forty - eight kilometres per hour. On the end of this day, the first powered aircraft was taken by the wind and crashed without a pilot. So the Wright's went back to their drawing board to design Flyer II.

But the successful flight did not make headline news all over the world. Most people thought that it would be impossible for small - town enthusiasts. If it was possible, it would be done by trained engineers. If engineers were not able to realize the dream of powered aircraft, how could it be done by people who were not engineers? But the Wright's continued improving their aircraft. With Flyer II and Flyer III, they increased the length of their flights and the manoeuvrability of their aircraft in the air. A few years later Flyer III flew for a total of thirty - eight minutes, covering thirty - eight kilometres. The flight included demonstrations of turning, circling and flying a figure.

At that time the Wrights wanted to go into business. But they had found no one who wanted to buy a powered aircraft. The United States Army was also not interested. So Wilbur Wright travelled to Europe by ship with a demonstration machine. The kings of some European countries watched the demonstration. The Daily Mail, an English newspaper, reported about the aircraft. Everyone was talking about flying. So the Wrights had all the publicity they needed - the air age had arrived.

In World War I aircraft, which could reach speeds approaching 161 kilometres per hour, were used. They played a small but important part in that war. The aircraft were needed to make weapons more efficient, for example to carry heavy bombs deep into the enemy territory.
The years after World War I were a time when aviators competed with each other to score ‘firsts’. But aircraft were not only used for record - breaking. They were very useful as a profitable means of transport. For example, the first airmail service began a few years after the invention of Flyer III in Britain.

The first airlines were also founded at that time, for example in countries like Britain, France and the Netherlands, which had large empires scattered across the world. The first passenger planes were tiny. They could usually carry only eight passengers. Often bombers of World War I were fitted with seats for carrying passengers. But soon the aircraft industry began to build planes specially designed for comfortable passenger travel.

Because of the long distances in the United States, air travel really took off. American aircraft builders moved into the lead. They built the Douglas DC3, also called the Dakota. It became the most widely used plane among the world's airlines, carrying mail or passengers over short distances.

Meanwhile, an entirely different kind of aircraft had appeared: the helicopter. Helicopters use spinning rotor blades to move forward and also to hover. Sir George Cayley began to work on the idea of the helicopter some 300 years after Leonardo da Vinci, who made unrealistic plans of helicopters. In the middle of the 19thcentury, Cayley produced a steam - powered design, but it was never built. A real helicopter had to await the invention of the internal combustion engine.


The idea of an engine producing power by shooting out a stream of gases and compressed air is old. It is said that Sir Isaac Newton thought about at the end of the 17thcentury. Two hundred years later, an aeroplane driven by steam jets was designed, although it was never built. Then, at the beginning of the 20th century, the gas turbine was invented. This works by using hot exhaust gases to drive a turbine, in a similar way to the jet engine. Gas turbines were used in industry, and some people began to wonder if they could be adapted to power aircraft.

Jet - engined aircraft flew fast and moved swiftly into action. So they were a very efficient weapon in surprising the enemies. The first jet - engined aircraft of Britain was the Gloster Meteor. The first German jet - engined aircraft was the Messerschmidt 262 and the first aircraft of Russia using the powerful jet - engine was the MiG 15.

After World War II the jet technology that had been developed for use in warplanes could be applied to civilian aircraft. Piston engines needed a huge amount of fuel and they could not fly very high. Jet - airliners need less fuel and they are able to fly high above the clouds, so flying is more comfortable because of avoiding bad weather.
When the aircraft were able to carry larger numbers of passengers, the cost of air travel fell. So more people could afford travelling by plane.

The jet engine developed more and more. Aircraft became faster and faster. The world's major airforces had a new target: They wanted to break the sound barrier, which is about 1160 kilometres per hour. The first plane which broke the sound barrier was an American Bell X - 1 aircraft.
But not only military aircraft are able to fly at supersonic sounds. Also airlines wanted to use such fast planes. But as a means of transport, such aircraft are very expensive. Only two have ever gone into service - the Concorde and the Tupolev 144. Both planes were disappointments. The Tupolev 144 had technical problems and the Concorde has never earned the money that was spent on it.

2.5 Rockets

Like a jet engine, a space rocket uses the backward rush of exhaust gases to propel itself forward. A jet engine uses the oxygen which exists in the atmosphere to burn the fuel. A space rocket contains its own supply of oxygen.

A major problem was to make the rockets powerful enough to leave the atmosphere of our earth. The solution of that problem was the liquid fuel. The main parts of those liquid fuels were oxygen and hydrogen.
Germany was the world leader in rocket - technology. The USA and the USSR got German specialists. The division of knowledge about rockets led to the ‘space race’ of the 1960's and 1970's between the two superpowers.
The first target was to break free of the earth's gravitation pull. The USSR's Sputnik 1 became the first satellite to achieve this. Russia scored first and so America's rocket team, led by Wernher von Braun redoubled its efforts. The first American satellite was the Explorer 1.

The first living passenger in space was a dog named Laika in the Sputnik 2. The first human in space was Yuri Gagarin from Russia. The first humans landed on the surface of the moon were the US - astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin Aldrin and Michael Collins.


3.1 What are Human Rights?

Human beings are all different, of course. Some are stronger than others some have dark skin, some have light skin; there are different religions they belive in; there are man and women, adults and children. But however we are, surley none of us should be treated unfairly or cruelly?
To protect all of these different creatures we have got human rights.

3.2 Legal, Moral and Human rights

A right entitles us to have or to do certain things. Rights can be divided into three main groups: the legal, moral and human rights.

3.2.1 Legal Rights

Legal Rights are rights laid down in laws. For that reason, legal rights are the most solid of all rights, because they can be defended in a national court of law. Most, but not all, legal rights are written down. The basic legal law in some countries is a written constitution or bill of rights (like Germany or the United States of America). In these documents the countries have written down what citizens are allowed to do. British law works the other way round (like everything). There is nothing like a basic law guaranteeing people’s rights. In Britain people have the right to do everything, unless a law is forbidding it.

3.2.2 Moral Rights

In contrast to legal rights, moral rights are not facts, but are based on general principles of fairness and justice. A moral right may or may not be supported by the law of the land. Some of the moral rights are claimed by people in particular situations. They are not rights that can be claimed by all peoples in all situations. What the law lays down can sometimes conflict with what people see as their moral rights.

3.2.3 Human Rights

Human rights apply to all people at all times in all situations, so they are universal moral rights. By definition, human rights are not earned, bought or inherented. Human rights are possessed by everybody in the world because they are human. People are equally entitled to them regardless of their gender, race, colour, language, national origin, age class or religious creed.
Some human rights are more important than others. The right to life is the most basic of all, without it all other rights are in danger. Freedom of speech or the right to rest and leisure, for instance, count for very little if our right to life is not guaranteed. So the less important rights of one person must end where the basic rights of another person begin.

3.3 American Declaration of Independence and Universal Declaration of Human Rights

When American colonies became independent of Britain they issued a Declaration if Independence. This stated that 'all men are created equal' and have certain rights, including 'life, liberty, and the pursiute of happiness'. A few years later another ten articles where added and they called it 'The Bill of Rights'.
This was the foundation for the American Declaration of Independence. I want to give you a quotation from the American Declaration of Independence now:
"We hold these truths to be self - evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."

Many of the major problems we face today require international co - operation, so we need international commissions, conferences and organisations to solve these problems.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is one of these international operations. Spurred on the bloodshed and horror of the Second World War, the nations planned the details of an international organisation, the United Nations, which would work for a better and more peaceful future. A United Nations Charter, defining the purposes, principles, methods and structures of the new organisation, was signed by fifty nations in 1945.
Because of the inhumanity in the Second World War, the international protection of human rights was seen as one essential precondition of world peace. In 1946, the United Commission on Human Rights was founded to prepare an "international bill of rights".
The Commission worked out the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 10 December 1948, as "a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations".
Before 1948, a person was subjected to the laws of the nation. If those laws violated her or his rights, there was no internationally accepted organisation to help these people. With the Declaration of the Human Rights, the rights of a person are established regardless of what the law of the nation says. So it overrules the national laws.

3.4 Human Rights in Danger

Everybody knows about the violation against the human rights in the not "non - civilised" countriesm, like South Africa with their apartheid political system and Latin America, where people are tortured every day. Also in Europe we must see that human rights are in danger. Since 1990, there has been a bloody war in Yugoslavia, where the human rights were abused. Western organisations and nations were not able to stop that war for years. The Western European countries have no clean human - rights record. They did not want to have the refugees in their countries, so they sent them back their home countries where they are persecuted. Also some minorities are not treated equally in the Western countries (like the gypsies in most European countries).
Another force against human rights developed in the last few years, the economical interests. Western firms only work for more profit, without regard for human needs and rights.

3.5 Human Rights Organisations

3.5.1 Amnesty International

Amnesty was founded in 1961 by Peter Benenson, a Catholic lawyer who had English and Russian parents. Benenson hit upon the idea of working for the release of people imprisoned for their beliefs by means of letter - writing campaigns.
At the end of 1961, Amnesty International groups had been established in twelve countries (ten Western European countries, Australia and the USA). Benenson had also designed the symbol of the organisation, the candle in barbed wire.
Today, Amnesty has over 250,000 members in about 140 countries. The International Secretariat, in London, numbers 150 employees, nearly half of them involved in researching the details in human rights violations. Amnesty groups are strongest and most active in Western Europe.
Amnesty’s aims and techniques have changed since its foundation.
Its fundamental concern is to achieve the immediate release of political prisoners.
It also works to ensure that political prisoners are given a fair and prompt trail.
Its third aim is to seek the abolition of the death penalty and the elimination of the use of torture.

3.5.2 The Anti - Slavery Society

3.5.3 Helsinki Watch


Abschaffung, Aufhebung
barbed wire
death penalty
Entscheidung, Entschluß
ehemalig, frĂŒher
unverĂ€ußerlich, unverkĂ€uflich
Spielraum, hier: Macht
to claim
fordern, beanspruchen
to demand
fordern, verlangen
to endow
to entitle
to establish
festsetzen, errichten, grĂŒnden
to imprison
to persecute
to reunite
to subject
unterwerfen, abhÀngen
to violate
verletzen, brechen
hier: Strafprozeß


4.1 Letters

4.1.1 Why was a writing system introduced?

The primary cause for inventing writing was to record official matters such as taxes, payments for trading goods or details of ownerships. It took nearly three thousand years after the invention until people began to use writing in more imaginative ways such as for poetry or literary works.

4.1.2 First beginnings ... In Mesopotamia

About 5,500 years ago, the Sumerians in Mesopotamia were the first who invented writing. In the beginning, they scratched marks on limestone tablets but later they began to use soft clay tablets as their main writing material.

At first the writing system looked like pictures where each picture represented an object. The scribes had to know more than 2,000 symbols to write. This way of writing was very difficult because you had to know so many symbols and their meanings and it was not possible to add any descriptive information.

Later the Mesopotamians began to develop a more abstract system of wedge - shaped symbols - known as "Cuneiform" writing. The Cuneiform was invented because scribes started to write with a stylus and you were not able to make recognizable drawings with it. The stylus was made of reed or wood and had a wedge - shaped tip. The main advantage was that scribes now had to learn "only" 600 symbols.

4.1.3 The big breakthrough

These early forms of writing could only be read or written by very few people because it was difficult for people to master so many symbols. The big breakthrough in the history of writing came when people realized that all the syllables were made of only a few sounds. Each sound could be represented by a symbol (= letter). This discovery took place in 1600 BC and this was the beginning of the alphabet. Through this simplification, writing was from this time within the grasp of everyone.

4.1.4 The alphabet

The Greeks were the first that introduced vowels and consonants in their script and so the alphabet contained 26 letters. They began to write in horizontal lines from left to right. The word alphabet comes from the first two letters of the Greek alphabet. The alphabet evolved as time went by and so you will be able to see many similarites between the Greek alphabet and the one we use today. The reason for some changes was that the letters of the alphabet were suited to the material they used to write on. If letters were carved in stone, it was easier to use straight. For writing on papyrus or parchment however, a more rounded style flowed better.

4.1.5 The exception of today's writing systems

One script has developed in a way separate from the rest - the Chinese script. It doesn't have an alphabet - it only consists of thousands of symbols, like the ancient form of writing. Over the years the script has become more complicated. At the beginning it contained 2,500 symbols. Today there are about 50,000 different symbols. This form of writing using pictures is difficult to learn for writing, but it has an advantage when you read it. In our scripts you have to know the language to understand the words. But the Chinese writing represents a word with a symbol instead of spelling it out, so that people do not have to speak the same language to understand it, and that is the reason why it has spread over the Far East.

4.2 The Book

The development of the book was closely related to the development of the letters. In the beginning, about 2,000 BC, people used clay tablets as writing material. The first books were made of these clay tablets but this was not a very practical material for producing books.

4.2.1 Materials Papyrus

People began to search for better writing materials with a more useful surface to write on. About 3,500 BC, the ancient Egyptians discovered that the papyrus reed which grew by the River Nile could be made into a form of paper. The papyrus reed grows up to three metres and has a thick stem filled with a white spongy pith that could be made to a thin sheet of writing material. This writing material was named after the reed and gave us the English word "paper". For writing, scribes used a reed pen that was dipped into ink.
Papyrus became quickly known as a new writing material and was exported all over the world. It became the most important writing material and was used for thousands of years. But papyrus had a big disadvantage: The papyrus reed grew only wild in Egypt and because of this fact, all other countries had to import the reed from Egypt. So they were dependent on the supply of the Egyptians. If Egypt stopped supplying papyrus, then scribes in the rest of the world would not have something to write on. Parchment

A legend claims that this happened to the King of Pergamun about 160 BC because the Pharaoh of Egypt was jealous of the library at Pergamun. So the King of Pergamun ordered his people to find a new writing material for his scribes.
The result was that they used the skin of sheeps, goats or calves to make a type of paper called parchment. The scribes used a quill pen, which was made from a goose feather, to write. The sheets of parchment were sewn together into a book, protected by a cover made of wood or leather. And so, the book as we know began to appear. Paper

The next important invention was from the Chinese. The Chinese were responsible for one of the most important developments in the history of the book: the invention of the paper as we know it today.
The first paper was made in China about 50 AC. Old fishing nets, hemp and rags were beaten in water until they were a pulp of fibres. This pulp was spread on to a bamboo screen. The water drained through the screen and left a mat of fibres. Under high pressure, the rest of the water was pressed out of the fibres and then the paper dried in the sun. It happened some hundreds of years before the secret of paper - making reached the West and even then, it was by lucky chance. During the Siege of Samarkand in 768 AC, Arabs conquered the city and captured many Chinese prisoners. Among these prisoners there were some paper - makers who passed on the secret of paper - making. Up to the twelfth century, there were paper - making factories all over the world.

4.2.2 Effects of the books

Through books, it was suddenly possible to spread information to a wider audience. People began to use writing in more imaginative ways such as for poetry or literary works.
But people also became hungry for more knowledge and began to question the ideas of the past. For example, they began to question the behaviour of the powerful Roman Catholic Church. Influential thinkers published pamphlets attacking the Church for taking too much money from followers into its own pockets. These pamphlets helped to wake up the people and brought the end of the dominance of the Roman Catholic Church.

The development of books marks a milestone in our evolution. Before that, you had to believe what the oldest people told you about the time before. So you could only learn as much as they were able to remember about the past. In books you could restore knowledge for yourself and succeeding generations. So further inventions could be made because scientists could continue the work of someone else without knowing him. Another advantage was that knowledge was available to all people who were interested in it. Because of these and a lot of other facts, we could not imagine a world nowadays without letters and books.

4.3 Vocabulary

a matter of course
eine SelbstverstÀndlichkeit
brief survey
kurze Übersicht
Ton, Lehm
graps of
in der Reichweite von
pulp of fibres
Brei aus Fasern
pumice stone
hier: Gitter
Schreiber, Gelehrter
Haut, Schale
to be jealous
eifersĂŒchtig sein
to coat
to evolve
to scratch
to soak
to suit
hier: anpassen
to treat
wedge - shaped
keilförmig zugespitzte


5.1 Introduction

First I want to say that communication links between people have always been important.
Today we live in the Communications Age and we owe this to inventors in the last century.

5.2 Ancient times

In ancient times, bonfires on hilltops were used to signalling danger. The North American Indians used smoke signals and the Romans flashed messages with mirrors turned to catch the sun.

5.3 The electronic communication age

The invention of electric power revealed many possibilities for communication. The first telegraph was patented by a British scientist, Sir Charles Wheatstone and an Indian Army Officer, Sir William Cooke, in 1837. It used needles which pointed at different letters in response to electric currents. Some codes were created to communicate with this new invention. In the following picture we can see the different codes.

The Semaphore code, developed in 1794, used a system of moving arms worked by ropes to create symbols for each letter. Samuel Morse’s code could be transmitted along a wire using a key. This code is shown as dots and dashes. The code could also be transmitted with flashing lights. The Five - unit code was developed from the Morse code for using with a teleprinter, an instrument for typing telegraphs to be sent along telephone wires.

Morse established the first telegraph line between Washington and Baltimore in 1844. By the 1860’s telegraph wires connected the East and West Coast of the United States and there was a cable across the Atlantic to Europe.

5.3.1 Transmitting voices

Communication by telegraph was quicker than sending a letter, but slower than speaking to the person directly. If coded messages could be sent along electric wires, could the human voice also be transmitted?

Alexander Graham Bell gave us the answer. He knew that sounds make vibrations on the eardrum which the brain translates to make sense of them. His idea was to make a transmitter with a disc which would vibrate when struck by sound waves, in the same way as the eardrum. Sound vibrations from the transmitter would pass along a wire to a receiver which would also have a vibration disc. This receiver would convert the sound vibrations back into words. On March 6, 1876, the first words were transmitted. The telephone had been invented.

Now, in theory, it was possible to communicate by telephone with anywhere in the world. But one problem was still how to link up telephone lines so that people could ring up anyone they liked.

The answer was a telephone exchange, where lines from different telephone subscribers could be plugged into a switchboard to connect them to each other.

By 1885, there were 140.000 subscribers and 800 telephone exchanges. The first telephone exchanges were manual, which meant that operators sat in the exchange and plugged the lines into a switchboard by hand to connect calls. Today the calls are connected by computers.

5.3.2 Radio waves

In the middle of the nineteenth century, scientists began to examine the idea of transmitting sounds without wires. The first man to introduce the idea of electromagnetic waves was the British scientist, James Clerk Maxwell, who demonstrated that light is an electromagnetic wave and suggested the idea of radio waves. In 1888, the German scientist, Heinrich Hertz, produced and detected radio waves with a simple transmitter.

When Guglielmo Marconi, an Italien electronic engineer, read a newspaper report about electromagnetic waves in 1894, he resolved to find out if these "wireless" waves could be used to transmit sound. To make the receiver more sensitive to the signals, he connected a long vertical wire with the receiver. Marconi worked on this invention until he managed to send a signal from his house to a field two kilometres away.

Electromagnetic waves such as light and radio waves travel faster than sound. To transmit sound by radio waves, a microphone in a transmitter converts them into electrical signals. The signals pass to an aerial in the transmitter and spread out as radio waves. The aerial on the receiver picks up the waves and a loudspeaker turns them back into sound.

In 1899, Marconi transmitted a message about fifty kilometres across the English Channel and in 1901 he made the first radio link across the Atlantic. In 1920, the Marconi Company broadcast the first British radio programme.

5.3.3 Recording sound

Another new idea was the concept of storing sounds on a solid material so that they could be played over and over again. One of the greatest inventors, Thomas Alva Edison, invented the phonograph for recording and playing sound. He got the idea from the telephone, which had recently been invented. He constructed a recording machine and shouted the word "HELLO" into it. The sound that came back to him was an indistinct but definite "HELLO".

Edison’s first recording was the nursery rhyme "Mary had a little lamb".

5.3.4 Modern communication age

Today, all these methods of communication have moved forward in ways which their inventors could never have imagined. People can now listen to the music of a complete orchestra, with the sound of each instrument faithfully reproduced.

Equipment which produces high quality and accurate sound reproducing is known as high - fidelity or "hi - fi" equipment.

The latest method of reproducing music is digital recording, which is stored as a digital code and is translated into sound by a computerized player.

The compact disc is the best - known form of digital sound recording. It produces the finest - quality sound available at the moment.

The telephone can link people on opposite sides of the world in seconds, people have telephones in their cars and a telephone which shows a picture of the caller and recipent on a small screen is now becoming available. Documents are fed into a fax machine which turns the text and pictures into electronic signals. The signals are sent along the telephone wires and a fax receiver at the other end turns them back into exact copies of the documents sent.

The latest invention is the Internet with it services like e - mail, the World Wide Web, Usenet, Internet Relay Chat, ...


alt, altertĂŒmlich
Feuer im Freien
verbreiten (Nachricht)
bestehend, feststehend
extraterrestrial civilizations
außerirdische Zivilisation
hifi (high - fidelity)
hohe (elektr.) Klangtreue
in response
elektr. Stecker, Stöpsel
freigeben, (Geheimnis) aufdecken
sich drehen
spread out
Schalttafel, Telefonzentrale
to receive
wound up


6.1 Introduction

This speech is about hemp, also known as Cannabis, Marihuana, Reefer, Pot, Grass and other terms. For thousands of years this plant was an important resource and medicinal herb for many cultures. Only in our century was hemp defamed by a lobby of businessmen. This action was so perfect, that even today most people believe their lies.
But the ‘Legalize - It’ movement is becoming stronger, so one can say that changes are not far away.
I hope my speech will help to diminish prejudice against hemp.
Hemp is usable in many ways, and there are no real dangers at all. So how was it possible to spread all these lies, and why was it done? There is a simple answer to the why - money.
Hemp is a cheap resource, and the lobby which forced the US - government to outlaw hemp made their money with synthetic pharmaceutics (Bayer: Heroin, Merck: Kokain), paper, chemicals and oil.
The most effective weapon to mislead the public was the Boulevard - press.
They wrote about drug - crazed blacks killing whites or they brought headlines like ‘Marihuana: Assassin of Youth’. Even today, people do believe this and horror stories are still being told. They are lies nonetheless.

6.2 Hemp History

Hemp is the oldest useful plant in human history. The earliest hemp - textiles date back to 8000 B.C. - about this time pottery was invented. The art of making paper out of hemp - fibers was also discovered by the Chinese around 100 B.C. (in Europe paper was invented 1200 years later!).
In most cultures hemp was praised as ‘Weed of the Gods’, which was due to its universal usability and intoxicating effects.
From the Middle Ages until around 1930, nearly all textiles and ship - rigging in Europe and America were made out of hemp - fiber.
There were even times in America when it was mandatory to grow hemp.
And finally, if you take a closer look, you can find HEMP all over the map, like HEMPstead, New HAMPshire and maybe SouthHAMPton or NorthHAMPton.

What hemp can be used for

What hemp was used for in the past, has already been mentioned, so now I am going to speak about the possible present useages.

6.3.1 Paper

1 hectar of hemp supplies as much cellulose for paper production as 4 hectars of forest. Furthermore only small amounts of harmful chemicals are needed to make hemp - paper.

6.3.2 Fuel

Out of hemp - oil methanole can be produced, which can be used as fuel for nearly all combustion processes. Hemp - fuel is better than fossile - fuel, because no sulfur will be emitted into the atmosphere, only C02 (carbon dioxide). This amount of C02 is the same as that ‘breathed’ by the plant during growth.

6.3.3 Hemp as medicine

It is known that hemp is a helpful herb in treating many diseases, but was first in 1964 discovered responsible for many of the healing effects. Up until today scientists found about 60 substances in hemp of potential therapeutic use.

6.3.4 Other Uses

Hemp - cellulose can be used to create many plastics, which would then be biodegradeable.
Further, it is possible to build whole houses out of hemp. It is a perfect substitute for wood in constructions. A company in France has already built over 300 detached and semi - detached houses (including pipings and furniture) with hemp.
The biochemical possibilities of hemp can be used for thousands of products - from paint to dynamite. This would mean whole new industries, with jobs for thousands and billions in tax revenues.

The drug THC

Here I come to the point. THC (Tetral Hydro Cannabiol) causes a ‘high’ - this is why it’s illegal. But the importance of hemp as a industrial and medicinal resource far outweight the possible dangers of THC as a drug.
And additionally, these dangers are almost always overestimated.
There are a great number of studies which come to the conclusion that hemp is by far not as dangerous as alcohol or nicotin. Furthermore there is no possibility to become physically addicted to THC. Only a mental addiction is imaginable, but this depends on the personality of the user.

But to say it is completely harmless is wrong too. The possible dangers to one’s health are lung problems, due to smoking, and an increased possibility of injuries to others and oneself, due to carelessness and coordination - problems.
The most often quoted lie is that hemp is a ‘gateway drug’. There is simply no proof for this statement. Just as cigarettes will not lead to cigars or wine will not lead to whisky, so will hemp not lead to heroin or other hard drugs.

6.5 Conclusion

It is not right to prohibit hemp any further. The plant could make the earth a better place if used correctly. It could help regulate the world’s CO2 balance, create new economic conditions in Third World countries and help fighting diseases without chemicals.
It is my opinion that hemp should be totally legalized now to help the world and proceed into a better and greener future.


Artefakt (historischer Gegenstand)
AttentÀter, Mörder
burial object
by means of...
anhand von...
combustion process
crude oil
grĂŒner Star
zwingend, vorschreibend
medicinal herb
Heilpflanze / Heilkraut
to defame
verachten, Rufmord begehen
to despise
to prove
Verwendbarkeit, Brauchbarkeit
useful plant


7.1 Introduction

Surrounded by the huge Pacific Ocean, New Zealand lies far away from other countries. The nearest country is Australia and that is 1600 km away. The country which is as large as Germany has a population of only 3 Πmillion. It seems unbelievable that early Polynesian explorers, many centuries before the first Europeans came here, found this land at all. These early explorers were the early ancestors of the Maori.

7.1.1 The first settlers

The first Polynesian who arrived at New Zealand about 1000 years ago were hunters. They moved from place to place and lived on fish, birds and fruit. Later they settled in villages and grew sweet potatoes and other plants in gardens. As the population became larger and fertile land became important, tribes began to fight over the land. To defend themselves, they built villages on hills, which they protected by fences and called ‘pa’.

Although there were names for the individual tribes, before the Europeans came there was no name for the first New Zealanders. The word ‘maori’, which means ordinary or normal, was only used after the Europeans arrived.
Most Maori welcomed the first Europeans and traded with them. They were happy to have tools made of metal. Some Europeans were missionaries who wanted the Maori to be Christians. When the missionaries turned Maori, which had been an oral language so far, into a written language, many Maori in fact became Christians simply because they wanted to learn to read and write. Unfortunately, the Europeans also brought illnesses, alcohol and guns. Because of these things, the Maori population became smaller. When the tribes fought each other with guns, many more of them were killed.

7.1.2 The invasion of the Europeans

Not all of the first Europeans came to stay. Some came to hunt for seals and whales, others to find gold or take back flax and wood.

Most people who came to settle on farms did not know what they had to expect. Some were told that once they had cleared the land of trees, they would be given land for farms. But they had no idea what New Zealand bush was like. It was very hard to clear the land without machines to help them. People often had accidents or got lost in the bush and were never found.

The women settlers were hard - working and independent. Some women came to New Zealand on their own. New Zealand was the first country in the world to give women the right to vote, which was in 1863.

7.1.3 The Treaty of Waitangi

In 1840, a treaty was signed between the Maori and the Queen of Great Britain, called the Treaty of Waitangi. The treaty is an important part of New Zealand history as it made New Zealand a British colony. There is still a lot of discussion about it and people disagree about its meaning. One reason for this is that the Maori translation which the chiefs signed is different from the English. The chiefs did not realize that they were giving their full powers to the Queen, but thought they would have the same rights as British people, and that their land would be protected. Some chiefs did not sign at all because they were suspicious of the treaty. Those chiefs that actually signed were given two blankets each and some tobacco. Although the treaty said that the Maori would remain owners of their land, once it was signed the British tried to get as much land as possible.

7.1.4 The Maori struggled for their land

Many immigrants came to New Zealand because they expected to be able to buy cheap land. Some settlers simply took land which was not being used by the Maori for farming. Others bought land for small amounts of money and some paid only one member of the tribe for land that was owned by the whole tribe. When the Maori realized that the promises that were made to them were not kept, they started to defend their land. Wars between colonists and Maori were the result - and these wars gave the British government an excuse to take even more land. The government also made laws which made it easier for them to take, buy or control Maori land. Many Maori thought that what was happening was the opposite of what the treaty said. Over the 150 years since it was signed, the Maori have struggled to keep their land.

7.1.5 Maori today

Today the Maori still have many problems. They are often poorer than the Pakeha. Pakeha is the name of the white inhabitants of New Zealand. Many of then Maori had to leave their land and go to the cities to find jobs. There they found it hard to keep their language and culture alive. Although the Maori have solved some of these problems themselves, they are now a minority and still don’t have the political power to control their own future.

7.1.6 God's own country

The money that New Zealand earned from farming was used to help other New Zealanders in the 1930s. Old people were given pensions. Visits to doctors and hospitals were free for everyone and cheap houses were made available. Life was made easier for many people.

Later, when there were plenty of jobs, it became popular to describe New Zealand as ‘God's own country’. ‘God's own’ sounded like ‘Godzone’ and this name is still used as a joke by New Zealanders, although New Zealand is no longer such a rich country.

7.1.7 Dumping of nuclear waste

Since the Second World War, there have been about 200 nuclear explosions in the Pacific region. Although Britain and the USA have stopped testing their nuclear weapons here, France continues to test in the Pacific. Since 1975, these tests have been underground. Many New Zealanders are worried about the effect of these nuclear tests on the environment.

Since 1985 nuclear weapons and nuclear - powered ships have not been allowed into New Zealand harbours. When a visit by the United States warship was refused, the relationship between the two countries, which before had always been friendly, was affected.

7.2 Some call it paradise

Almost everywhere the scenery is beautiful. The weather is sunny, but not too hot - even in winter it only snows in the mountains. No matter where you live in this country, you are always close to the sea. There are many empty beaches along the rocky coastline and a lot of small islands in the sea that are home to birds and seals only. Some islands are nature reserves and people must have permission to visit them. No wonder that New Zealand seems like paradise to many people.

7.2.1 Different landscapes

In part of the North Island is one of the world's most active volcanic zones. There are geysers which can blow water up to 30m high. There are many extinct volcanoes in New Zealand, too. The city of Auckland is built on old volcanoes. New Zealand's largest lake, Lake Taupo, is the crater of a volcano. The South Island is divided by a mountain group called the Southern Alps. Here is Mount Cook, the highest mountain in New Zealand, which is over 3700m high. A number of glaciers can be found in the Southern Mountains.

7.2.2 Outdoor activities

The long coast and the many lakes, rivers and harbours are perfect for water sports. Kiwis enjoy sailing, diving, water - skiing, windsurfing and fishing.

7.2.3 Some New Zealand animals

New Zealand is known for its unusual birds. Many of them cannot fly! Before the Europeans came to the country, New Zealand used to have many more unusual birds that did not live anywhere else. The European settlers, however, did a lot of damage to the bird population. They cut down much of the forests in which the birds lived and they brought cats, rats and other animals which killed many birds. Some species did not survive. Even today, when people try to save birds species, 30 percent of the birds are in danger of dying out.

New Zealanders are often called Kiwis, yet very few have ever seen a kiwi outdoors. This is because these flightless birds live in the bush and only come out at night.
Several kinds of parrots live here. The kakapo, another flightless bird, is the heaviest parrot in the world. Only 60 of these birds are now alive. The kea is a parrot which lives in the mountains. Most tourists think that the keas are funny, but they need to keep an eye on these birds. Keas steal things from open tents and destroy things like windscreen wipers.
But it is not only birds that are typical of New Zealand. There are seals, sea - lions, dolphins, whales and many kinds of fish that live in the sea surrounding the islands; the so - called Hector's dolphins are only found here.
New Zealanders are thankful that there are no snakes living here. The only poisonous animal is the katipo spider and very few people have ever been bitten.

7.2.4 Paradise in danger

Because New Zealand has such a small population, pollution has often been ignored. Raw sewage in many places still goes into the sea and only recently has attention been drawn to the dumping of harmful chemicals (nuclear waste).
Another problem is that many tourists come to New Zealand because of the untouched nature. But the environment of New Zealand is polluted by these tourists.

7.3 Kiwi - 3 definitions

1. Name for a New Zealander
2. A flightless bird
3. The fruit


beeinflussen, betreffen
Vorfahr, Ahn
Christ/in, christlich
geogr. Geysir
glow worm
eine Menge, FĂŒlle
Polynesier/in, polynesisch
raw sewage
unbearbeitet AbwÀsser
abschlagen, verweigern
verwirren, beunruhigen
lÀngere Luft - oder Seereise
windscreen wipers


8.1 Geographical notes

The United Kingdom (UK) is a very small country, compared to others, but only 9 other countries have more inhabitants (55,9mio). In the whole country the Greenwich Mean time (MET - 1 hour) is used.

8.2 England and the different races

England is probably a country with one of the largest mixtures of cultures and races in the world. In the 1950s, people from the West Indies, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Hong Kong were encouraged to come and work in Britain. Today, 2 million British people are of West Indian or Asian origin and you recognize that if you walk through London. Most of the small shops, like newsagents or food shops, are operated by Indians. Nowadays the policy is to encourage these communities to continue speaking their own languages as well as English. The children of immigrants are often taught their own languages in school, and there are special newspapers, magazines, and radio and television programmes for the Asian community. This latest wave of migration has of course caused problems. There is certainly racial tension and racial prejudice in Britain today. Foreigners are unemployed or just get low - paid jobs, however slowly, both sides are learning to accept their new neighbours and are starting to take over customs of other cultures. For example, the British are becoming more adventurous in their cooking and eating habits, and Chinese, Indian and Pakistani restaurants are very popular. Another example can be found on the music scene, where reggae music has become very influential.

8.3 Religion

England was a Roman Catholic country until 1534, when King Henry VIII decided to divorce his queen, Catherine of Aragon. The pope refused to allow this. Henry was so angry with the pope that he ended all contact between England and Rome, divorced Catherine of Aragon without the pope's permission and married Anne Boleyn. After that, the Parliament named Henry head of the church of England. This was the beginning of the Anglican Church. Today there are not only Protestants, but different churches (denominations), such as the Roman Catholics (6 mio), Methodists (1,2 mio), Baptists and other smaller groups.

The educational system

8.4.1 Nursery school (under 5 years)

Children do not have to go to school until they reach the age of five, but there is some free nursery school education before that age. However places in the public nursery schools are not available for all who would like them, because the places are usually given to families under special circumstances, for example, families with only one parent. Because of the small number of nursery schools, parents in many areas have formed playgroups where children under 5 years can go for a morning or afternoon a couple times a week.

8.4.2 Primary education (5 to 11 years)

Primary education takes place in infant schools (pupils aged from 5 to 7 years) and junior schools (from 8 to 11 years).

8.4.3 Private education (5 to 18 years)

Some parents choose to pay for private education, in spite of the existence of free state education. These schools are very expensive and they are attended by about 5 per cent of the school population.

8.4.4 Secondary education (11 to 16/18 years)

Secondary education was introduced in 1944. Indeed, children must go to school until they are 16 years old, and pupils may stay on for one or two more years if they wish. Secondary schools are usually much larger than primary schools and most children (80 per cent) go to a comprehensive school at the age of 11. These schools are not selective, which means pupils don't have to pass an entrance exam there.

Three types:
    comprehensive school secondary modern school (= Hauptschule) grammar school (= Gymnasium)

In every school in England it is tradition to wear a school uniform, which is usually a suit and tie for the boys and a skirt and blouse for girls. By the way, boys and girls often go to separated schools, which means there are separate schools divided by sex.

The political system

The United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy. That means it's a monarchy which has very little power and can only reign with support of the Parliament. Parliament consists of two chambers, known as the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Parliament and the monarch have different roles in the government of the country, and they only meet together on symbolic occasions such as the coronation of a new monarch or the opening of Parliament.

8.6 Sports

The English play some different sports. For example, they like rugby. It's one of the national sports. Then there is cricket, a game similar to baseball. Polo is a sport of the richer, where the player sits on a horse and has to hit a ball with a "polo - stick" and score goals. We all know croquet, the nice game for the garden, but real fanatics are the English if the sport is soccer. The English soccer is one of the best and most exciting, and a lot of people go to the soccer grounds.

8.7 Festivals

The English have festivals which are different than those we are used to For example, there is St. Valentine's Day on the 14th of February. On this day people send cards to the ones they love or someone whom they have fallen in love with. People usually do not sign these cards and a lot of time is spent trying to guess who has sent them.
On the day before Ash Wednesday, called Pancake Day, the English traditionally eat a lot of pancakes.
On the 1st of May they have a maypole and they dance like we do.
On the 31st of October there is Halloween, which means "holy evening". Although it is a much more important festival in the United States than in Britain, it is celebrated by many people in the UK. It is particularly connected with witches and ghosts. At parties people dress up in strange costumes and cut horrible faces in potatoes and other vegetables and put a candle inside, which shines through the eyes. People may play difficult games, such as trying to eat an apple from a bucket of water without using their hands. In recent years children dressed in white sheets, knocked on doors and asked whether you would like a "trick" or a "treat". If you give them something nice, a "treat", they go away. However, if you don't, they play a trick, such as spilling flour on your front doorstep.
The most important festival of the year is Christmas. The customs on this day are very similar to Christmas in Austria. The English have a Christmas tree and there are presents. Children leave a long sock or stocking at the end of their beds on Christmas Eve, hoping that Father Christmas will come through the chimney and bring some presents. Traditional food on this day is turkey, Christmas pudding, Christmas cake or a hot mince pie.

8.8 The mentality (character) of the English

England is far away, but not only in distance. The English are completely different compared to continental Europeans. That the cars drive on the "wrong" side is just the begining and it is quite normal if you eat a pizza with chips on it and pour loads of vinegar all over this. Yes, it is true, the British have other, sometimes mysterious, customs.

In France you are impolite if you let a conversation drop, in England it is rash to keep it up. No one blames you for silence. Being modest is another huge difference between the English and the continental Europeans. An Englishman will say, "I have a little house"; when he invites you to stay with him you'll discover that the little house is a place with three hundred bedrooms. Their home is their castle.
Those in England do not work too hard. They work rather slowly, with over - long strides. In the army they say, "Never refuse a job, never volunteer for one".

The English punctuality is more than a habit; it's a vice. If you are invited for eight - thirty, that means eight - thirty in England and not eight - twenty - nine or eight - thirty - one. In France you would have to come around nine - fifteen. The English people are also conservative and very polite. An English person will never talk back.


Karfiol (Blumenkohl)
FrĂŒhstĂŒcksflocken (z.B. cornflakes)
tollkĂŒhn, vorschnell
langer Schritt, Fortschritt
to compete with
sich messen mit


9.1 Introduction

Since the Industrial Revolution the ammount of harmful chemicals put into the atmosphere by man has been increasing steadily.
Acid rain is only one of many pressures on our environment caused by the modern way of life.
The global warmig effect and the deforestation of the tropical areas are also two major problems we must face today.
However, this way of life depends on the resources the enviroment provides to us and if we continue to destroy the environment, then it will not be able to support us any longer.
I will be telling you more about acid rain and how it can damage the environment.

9.2 Air pollution

Most air pollution is a result of burning fossil fuels like coal and oil.
These fuels have been formed over thousands of years from dead plants and animals.
When the fuel is burnt, not only the energy is released, but many other chemicals as well, including sulphur and nitrogen that the organic material contained. These substances are two of the most important ingredients of acid rain.

Another chemical released into the atmosphere in high quantities is carbondioxide. The effect of this chemical is to help the global warming effect.
The pollution we talk about is created mostly by traffic, factories and cities.

9.2.1 What happens to air pollution ?

Some of the pollution falls to the ground very quickly, before it is absorbed by moisture. It settles on trees, buildings and lakes, usually in and around the area where it was produced.
This is called ‘dry deposition’.

When water evaporates from seas, lakes or land, the moisture is neither acid nor alkaline.
It is neutral.
But the moisture can absorb gases, like carbon dioxide, found in the atmosphere, and become a weak acid.

Even worse, the moisture can react with the sulphur or the nitrogen from the air pollution, and thus becoming dilute sulphuric and nitric acids. This is described as acid rain.
Clouds of acid rain can be travelling a long distance before they rain down their enviroment - destroying liquid.

In winter, when acid rain falls as snow, the snow collects on the ground, holding on as acids.
In spring, when the snow melts, there is a sudden surge of water which flows across the land into streams and lakes.
Sometimes the water in these lakes and rivers becomes so polluted from one day to another that ecological disasters, like mass dying of fish, are the result.

9.2.2 How far can pollution be carried ?

The pollution is carried by the wind. It depends on the weather how long it stays in the air before it is deposited on the ground.
If it is cloudy and wet, the pollution reacts with the water in the air and rains down to the earth, but if it is dry, then even a gentle wind of 16 kilometres per hour can carry the pollution over 1,600 kilometres in five days.
The longer the pollution stays in the atmosphere, the more chemical reactions can occour, making the pollution more and more harmful.

9.3 Damage to the soil

All chemicals that are absorbed by the rainclouds are rained back to the earth and there they accumulate in the ground and destroy an important part of the biospere.
It is an alarming development that much of the farmland in industrialized countries is contaminated with harmful chemicals and heavy metals.

9.4 Damage to the trees and forests

The forests and especially the rainforests of South America help to control the global warming effect because plants use vast quantities of carbondioxide to produce oxygen.
In recent years, large areas have been destroyed, as the trees are cut down for wood, burned for farmland or the trees simply died because of extensive pollution.
Fact is that in heavily industrialized areas 40 per cent of the trees are dead or dying from acid rain.

Damage to buildings

If you look at many buildings, especially old ones, you may well notice that the building materials are breaking up. Building materials weather naturally, but over a long period of time, usually many centuries.
Acid rain speeds up the process.
Good examples in Austria are Saint Stephen’s Cathedral, the Votiv Cathedral and the City Hall of Vienna.
Acid pollution can also corrode metals quickly (everyone knows the green covering on copper).
Millions of schillings had to be and have to be spent to restore these famous buildings.
But who should pay ? Should it be the taxpayers of Austria or the factories that caused the pollution in the first place ?
The problem of pollution does not stop at the borders of a country!


One of the main reasons for differences between human beings are the geographical barriers, which kept the groups apart for a long time. Each group evolved its own characteristics.
The races differ in their skin colour, their blood and other physical characteristics.
Including all sub - divisions there are about 40 racial groupings, or "ethnic groups" as they are strictly called.

10.1 Important words

When one person dislikes another person just because he belongs to a different race, we call this attitude "racialism" or "racism".

"Prejudice" means judging before you have the facts.

If people of a particular group or race are treated differently from another group or race, this is "discrimination".

One of the clearest kinds of prejudice is "stereotyping". This is when all people in a particular group are thought to have the same characteristics. (For example: "All blacks are lazy.")

10.2 Different skin colour

The most common form of racialism today is the dislike of people with dark - coloured skins.

The great majority of people with dark brown skins are of the negroid race. To distinguish them from light brown people they are now usually called blacks.
The reason why African people are discriminated more than the Chinese, Indians or Arabs is easy to explain: Europeans knew, that the Chinese, Indians or Arabs had civilizations stretching back many centuries. They knew nothing about the African history. So Europeans believed that the African people had "just come out of the jungle".


This belief in the inferiority of negroid people seemed to be confirmed by the slave trade. Black people were captured in Africa, transported in ships across the Atlantic Ocean and sold to plantation - owners as slaves. By the early 19thcentury millions of black slaves were working on cotton, sugar and fruit plantations in Brazil, on the islands of the West Indies and in the United States.

10.4 Freeing the American slaves

In the middle of the 19thcentury there was a civil war in the United States. It was caused because of the slavery. The north with President Abraham Lincoln wanted to abolish slavery. That was a problem for the south, which needed lots and lots of slaves for the plantations. But the north won and the slaves were freed.
But the slaves were discriminated against.
In the south:
    Negroes were prevented from using the same buses or restaurants as white people they were prevented from voting white gangs called the Ku Klux Klan even murdered black people and were not brought to trial

10.5 Martin Luther King

In the middle of the 20thcentury in America any black people were finding it difficult to "turn the other cheek". Compared with the white people, they lived in very poor conditions and were not able to obtain good jobs. Violent riots broke out in some of the cities with large black populations. Martin Luther King was a black leader who only used non - violent methods. Like Ghandi, he believed in the power of peaceful protest. He didn’t want to fight against the discrimination with violence, he did it with the help of demonstrations. Martin Luther King died because of an assassination.

10.6 Multiracial society in Britain

Many Irish, Jews, Chinese and Poles, for example, have settled in Britain over the past century. Many people came from the former colonies. It was never made very clear whether or not the people of these former colonies were British citizens. And so they had the right to live and settle in Britain.

10.6.1 Where have they settled?

These "immigrants" tended to settle where there was work and cheap housing. So people of the same race tended to live close to each other. Coloured people therefore concentrated in a small number of cities: in London, Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, and Bradford in particular.
Some families have been in Britain for so long now that it is misleading to call them "immigrants".

10.7 Apartheid

10.8 What is apartheid?

Ever since white people settled in the country they have been in charge. But since the middle of the 20thcentury a very particular set of arrangements have been introduced to try to keep the Whites and Blacks separated. This system is called "apartheid" and it was executed in South Africa. It takes two forms:

10.8.1 "Grand apartheid"

The eventual aim is, theoretically, for the Blacks to be confined to certain parts of South Africa while the Whites have the rest. Certain areas of the country have been allotted to the Blacks. These lands are called Homelands. Gradually the government is giving them so - called independence, though in fact the Homelands have no real chance of being properly independent.

10.8.2 "Petty apartheid"

From the middle of the 20thcentury many laws were passed to keep the black and white races separated even where they were working in the same places. Inter - marriage was forbidden. For example, Blacks and Whites had to use separate buses, toilets and beaches. Blacks had to carry passes. A few years ago some of these laws had been repealed.


"to turn the other cheek"
"die andere Wange hinhalten"
to allot
to be confined
eingesperrt sein
to confirm
to distinguish
to repeal
Prozeß, Verhandlung

11 BRAVE NEW WORLD (Aldous Huxley)

11.1 About the Author

Aldous Huxley was born on 26 July 1894 near Godalming, Surrey (GB).
He wanted to become a medical doctor, but because of an eye disease that left him virtually blind, he studied literature and became an author.
He bagan writing poetry and short stories in his early twenties, but is was his first novel ‘Chrome Yellow’ (1921) which established his literary reputation.
Brave New World was published in 1932.
Huxley died 1963 in California.

11.2 Genre

B.N.W. is considered a part of the utopian tradition in literature. The word ‘Utopia’ derives from the Greek language and means ‘no place’ and ‘good place’.
Normaly an utopic novel portrays an ideal society wich the reader is invited to contrast with his own. Fact is, that most people think that the society of B.N.W. is not a perfect one, it rather presents an anti - utopia, or dystopia (from the greek word for ‘bad place’).

11.3 Setting

The story is set in the year A.F. 632, that is 632 years after Henry Fords invention of mass production.
Ford is also the deity of the ‘World State’, a global caste with ist members ranging from alpha - plus intellectuals down to epsilon - minus semi - morons for menial tasks.
The motto for this state is ‘Community, Identity, Stability’.
Each one of the ten zones of the wold is run by ‘his fordship’, the Resident World Controller.
The World State has 2000 million standardised citizens that have not been born, but ‘hatched’ to fulfill their predestined social roles. During childhood every citizen is preconditioned with the help of sleep - teaching and hypnose.
Because of this everyone is perfectly happy with his role in society. To keep the people occupied through their spare time the goverment gives free handouts of drugs, and approves promiscuity.
The only places were life like we know it is allowed to exist are the ‘Savage Reservations’.


Bernhard Marx, an alpha - plus intellectual, who is dissatisfied with life takes a holiday trip to a savage reservation in New Mexico. From there he brings the savage John with him. At first John is fascinated by the ‘Brave New World’ but soon becomes desillusioned because he realises that no one is allowed to think freely. He incites a riot in his rage against the system and is arrested together with Bernhard Marx, and a friend of Marx, Helmholtz Watson.
‘His fordship’ Mustapha Mond exiles Marx and Watson to islands that serve as asylums for misfits.
The savage, however, escapes. For a brief time he is happy living alone in the english countryside. But curiosity - seekers find him, ruin his peace, and so John commits suicide by hanging himself.

11.5 Major Characters

The two charakters in B.N.W., Bernhard Marx and the Savage, can be considered major Charakters, because the novel follows primarly their stories.
Although different in most ways, because Marx is a product of the Brave New World and the savage is only a visitor, both are outcasts in their society.

Unlike the other Alpha - Plus Marx is short, scrawny and even ugly. He is melancholic because his physical deficiencies seperate him from his fellow men. Moreover, this flaws have created in him a ‘mental excess’, wich makes it impossible for him to adjust to the life in the Brave New World. In general is Marx a very unpleasant character, he alternates between arogant and self - pity.

The Savage, in contrast, is a splendid physikal specimen, but he is, after all, an outcast in his own society of Red Indians because of his white skin, blond hair and blue eyes.
Because of this he identifies with Marx. But unlike Marx he does not repress his violent instincts as clearly seen in the revolt he starts. In the end he is unable to manage his grief for his mother, his sexual problems and his dislike for the society, and so he commits suicide.


12.1 England

Many historians start the story of human rights with a ceremony at Runnymede, a meadow by the River Thames in England.
In 1215, King John was forced to accept Magna Carta - the Great Charter of Liberties.

Magna Carta was revolutionary as from now on the king, as his people, was subjected to the law; and ist most important article may be regarded as the first expression of "modern" human rights:
No free man shall be taken, or imprisoned, or despossessed or outlawed, or banished, or in any way injured,... except by the legal judgment of his equals by the law of the land.

And most Englishmen were free in that sense. Magna Carta was important not just at the time but in later centuries.
For example, in the seventeenth century, Parliament thought that Charles I was becoming to powerful. The quarrel led to the Civil War. During the quarrel, Parliament quoted Magna Carta against the king. In the same century several other important documents were drawn up in England, listing the rights of subject against the king.

12.2 Magna Carta (The birth of democracy)

King John (1199 - 1216) was a most unpopular ruler. His demands for high taxes to pay for his wars and wish to appoint the Archbishop of Canterbury himself brought him into conflict with the powerful barons and the Church.
The bishop and the barons met and drew up a list of demands, the Magna Carta, which John was forced to sign in 1215.
As the result, the powers of the Council of barons and bishops greatly increased.
Later "two knights from each shire and two burghers from each borough" were invited to join the barons and bishops in the Council or, to use the French word, Parliament.
This first happened in 1265, and soon the holding of parliaments became a regular custom.
In the 14thcentury both groups began to meet separately. Thus Parliament came to be divided into the House of Lords and the House of Commons.

A new wife and a new Church

Henry VIII (1509 - 1547) had six wives and had two of them executed. His marriages had
far - reaching consequences. As the Pope had not allowed him to divorce his first wife, Henry was unable to remarry. The people didn't approve of his divorce, but the Church of Rome had become very powerful, and many people objected to the interference of the Pope in national affairs.
So it was with the support of Parliament that Henry finally broke with Rome and made himself Head of the Church in England.
A century of struggles followed, until Britain's religious and political independence was firmly established by the Glorious Revolution.

12.4 Shakespeare's life

He was born on April 23rd, 1564 at Stratford - on - Avon, as son of John Shakespear, who was a glover and held a high position as High Bailiff and Chief Alderman in his small town. But John S. fell into debt and had to mortgage his wife's farm.
Wiliam was educated at the Grammar School of Stratford. In 1582 at the age of 18, he married Ann Hathaway, a farmer's daughter who was eight years senior. Three children were born to them.

In 1586 Shakespear went to London, where he joined the Blackfriars’ Acting Company. When the Blackfriars built a summer - theatre, "The Globe" he became a shareholder in his enterprise. He became very prosperous and after a while he was able to buy a property in his home town, where he retired in 1611. He was able to support his father and his own family and was respected and a well - done - citizen.

He wrote about Comedy/Romance, History and Tragedy.

    Midsummer Night's Dream Merchant of Venice Measure for Measure Much Ado about nothing

    Henry VIII (IV, V, VI) Richard II, III

    Romeo and Juliet Hamlet Othello Julius Caesar Macbeth

12.5 Shakespeare for a Penny

In the time of Elizabeth I theatre - going was very popular. Plays were performed without scenery, and sometimes a signboard was carried across the stage to indicate where the action was supposed to take place.
The better - off people sat on the balcony, while the poorer people, called groundlings, paid a penny to stand around the stage, drinking beer and smoking pipes, which were passed from hand to hand, booing if the play was bad and cheering or shouting if they liked it.
What people expected was s good mixture of violence, bloodshed and romance and, last but not least, a good deal of fun, so that even in tragedies, clowns used to appear on the stage between the acts of the play to entertain the audience with their jokes.
All these elements were integrated in Shakespeare's plays, which were among the most popular.


Plastic Money is a very global expression. It is a way of exchanging money in a non - cash - way. That means instead of giving cash to the shop keeper you pay with a card that deducts the amount you have to give. Another way of plastic money is for examlpe the telephone card, where a certain amount is saved on the card. After your call the price of the telephone call is going to be deducted from the card, and it will have less value than before.
Cards, where no amount is saved, and no amount is going to be deducted from an account, are called Club Cards. With such a club card you count for a memeber of a certain club or organisation and can get perhaps a definetaly reduction or just the possiblility to enter a definetaly area (e.g. backstage cards).

13.1 Credit Cards

Thirty years ago, credit cards were rare. Tody, billions of them (not to mention phone cards, club cards, cash cards and others) are used every day. All over the world millions of people are using credit cards to buy all kinds of merchandise, to rent auotmobiles, to make telephone calls, to settle hotel bills, to have their cars serviced.
The idea behind credit cards is simple. When you buy something you give your card to the shop assistent. He or she fills in a form, and you sign it. Then, at the end of the month you receive a bill from the credit company. This lists everything you’ve bought on credit in the past four weeks.
Continous credit up to an agreed limit is available to the holder.
But for some people this can become a real problem. They spend too much, can’t afford to pay it back, and get into debt. For some people, though, credit cards are "flexible" friends - a useful and convenient alternative to cash.

13.1.1 Different Credit Cards

There are a lot of different cards available. Currently, most people of the world are attended and using VISA card.

13.1.2 The card itself

A credit card enables its holder to obtain credit at all establishment that have joined the scheme. The cards are usually made of plastic or stiff cardboard. Each card has a number (code) which is recorded on the invoice. The customer pays no extra but the shopkeeper (the hotel, the garage or restaurant) pays a charge of perhaps 2% to 4%.

13.2 Cheque Cards

13.2.1 What can a cheque card do for its holder?

A cheque card quarantees that any cheque up to a certain amount will be honoured by the bank on which it is drawn. The shopkeeper (the hotel, the restaurant, the filling station) can be sure that the cheque will not bounce.

13.2.2 How do we use a cheque card?

The holder will present it when he is ready to pay. When he knows the amount of his invoice he will write out and sign the cheque in the presence of the person he is handing it to.

13.2.3 How does the person getting the cheque know that it will be paid?

He will compare the signature on the cheque with the specimen on the cheque card and compare the account number on the cheque with the account number on card. Moreover, he should make sure that the cheque card has not expired and write the serial number of the cheque card on the back of the cheque. In this way he can make sure that the cheque will be paid by the bank.

13.2.4 How can one draw cash with a cheque card?

The holder can draw cash by presenting his cheque card and drawing the cheque in the presence of the cashier. He may cash for each cheque up to a certain amount. In Austria the amount is 2500, - at the present.

13.2.5 Can one get cash abroad?

If the cheque card displays the "Eurocheque" symbol, the holder can cash cheques at any bank in Europe displaying the same symbol. In this case he makes out the cheque to the usual amount in his country’s currency according to the current rate of exchange after presenting his passport.

13.2.6 cheque guarantee cards

These are called cheque cards for short and they’re a form of identification. When you give someone a cheque, you shown them the card, too. This proves you’re the person whose name is on the cheque. It also means that your bank guarantees to pay the cheque (up to a certain amount). Banks advise their customers to keep cheque books and cheque cards separately, because if a card is stolen, it can’t be used without the cheque book and vice versa.

13.3 Telephone cards

Lots of public phone boxes don’t accept cash these days - they only take cards. When you buy a phone card you get a fixed amount of telephone time (which is measured in units). After that it’s simple. All you do is use the card until you’ve run out of units. And then you buy another one.
The advantage of phone cards is that you dont’t need cash to make a call.

13.4 Cash Dispenser Cards

These are called cash cards for short. Nowadays, some of them are cheque guarantee cards, too. That means you only need one piece of plastic to (a) get money from a cash dispenser, (b) prove your identity when you sign cheques. The information printed on cash cards includes:

♦ the identification number of the card itself
♦ the dates between which the card can be used
♦ the name of the card owner.
♦ the code number of the card - owner’s bank
♦ the card - owner’s bank account number

13.5 Future finance

13.5.1 fantastic plastic

Already some credit cards include tiny computers. These smart cards’ make and record each payment electronically. But scientists are also developing even smarter cards with mini calculators and keyboards, for the possiblity to ask the card finance questions.

13.5.2 Euro money

In the near future there could be just one currency for the whole European Union. This will be the biggest development ever in Europe’s financial and business history.

13.5.3 Tele shopping

Computers are going to play a major role in twenty - first century shopping. As a matter of fact, with computerized ‘tele shopping’ you’ll soon be able to buy goods without even leaving home.

13.6 Vocabulary

sich leisten
platzen (ungedeckter Scheck)
WĂ€hrung / Umlauf
stiff cardboard
steife Pappe


14.1 How to write a Business Letter

There are different kinds of business letters. But before I talk about the different kinds of letters, I'll tell you how a business letter should look like.

14.2 Different kinds of business letters

14.3 Different kinds of business letters

There are four different kinds of business letters: inquiries and offers, orders and delays & complaints.

14.4 The inquiry

Business tractions frequently start with inquiries because people want to get some information about something.
An inqury should be clear, concise, complete and courteous in order to ensure a satisfactory answer. There are general or sales - related iquieries. An inquiry may consist of a single sentence, written even on a postcard. Some firms use printed inquiry forms when goods of a certain specification are required. Inquiries ask for: catalogues, brochures, price - lists, terms of payment, discounts, ..., and so on.

Some phrases for the writing of an inquiry:

    We refer to your advertisment ... (and would be interested in having further details). We should appreciate full particulars of your latest products. XY & Co. have recommended your goods and know - how to us. We require the material for the manufacture of ... If your prices are competitive (meet our requirements (expectations)) we should be able to ...

A short example for an inquiry:

Dear Sirs,
Would you please send me some information about your products and quote prices, delivery date, and terms of payment.
Yours faithfully, xxx

or another example:

Dears Sirs,
I saw your "Starsonic" radios at the British Industries Fair last week.
Would you please giveme a quotation for 200 (two hundred) of these models and let me have your terms of payment.
Your prompt reply would be appreciated.
Yours faithfully, xxx

The offer

An offer is the answer to an inquiry. You get the information you asked for, when the inquiry was precise.
Every inquiry should be answered promptly and courteously.
The reply is to build goodwill by:
    giving the information requested adding further information sending the price list, catalogue, etc. offering advantages submitting a detailed offer.

Solicited offers are written in answer to inquiries.
Unsolicited offers are made voluntarily.

Some phrases for the writing of an offer:

    We appreciate your interest in .. As requested, we are sending you ... We are enclosing ... We regret that ... We hope that you will be satisfied.

A short example for an offer:

Dear Sirs,
We have pleasure in offering you our newwashing machines at the prices shown on the attached list.
Please let us know if you are interested. We hope you will take advantage of this exceptional offer.
Yours faithfully, xxx

The order

Placing orders is largely routine.
Buyers often use printed order forms and sellers use printed acknowledgments.
Orders placed by telephone are confirmed in writing to avoid misunderstanding.
An order - letter can contain
    details of description, quantities, prices, place, date, mode of transport, terms of payment, conditions of delivery, ...

Some phrases for the writing of an offer:

    Please supply the following goods. We ask you to send us ... Enclosed you will find our Order No. 4289. The delivery date must be kept.

A short example for an order:

Please supply:
40 Timex Quartz "Rio" a L 8.90
Delivery: prompt

14.7 The delay and complaint

You have to write a letter if you don't get the merchandise in time, or if you don't get payed in time.
You should be polite all the time even when your opponent isn't. If you think that you wount get your money you can threaten with telling that you'll go to the judge. Dont do that before you wrote three admonishments.

Use the phrases from before.

A short example for writing such a letter.

Dear Sir or Madame,
Subject: Our order 669/MP
A week ago we notified you that three AC adapters for the cassette recorders are missing. We still have not heard from you or received the missing components.
This delay is extremely annoying, particulary in view of the fact that the Christmas rush is already on.
We must insist on receiving the adapters within the next few days.
Faithfully, xxx

14.8 Vocabulary

Nachfrage, Informationsanforderung
in Kenntnis setzten
solicited offers
angeforderte Angebote
to build goodwill by
Vertrauen aufbauen durch


15.1 Introduction

A characteristic of a high developed society is shown by how the society deals with handicapped people. In early days it was a shame to have a handicapped child but today disabled people are accepted by our society and considered as "normal" citizens.

About one per cent of all born babies have some kind of disability. Disabilities are physical, mental or learning handicaps. The reason for their handicap could be that their mothers smoked, drank alcohol or took drugs during the pregnancy. It could also be because of a premature birth. If a baby is born 2 months too early for example, it has a 50 - 50 chance of staying alive. About 90 per cent of these children are disabled.

15.2 Kinds of disabilities

There are many different kinds of disabilities:

    Blind (visually impared person)
    Blind children can develop in the same way other babies do. When they learn the ear - hand coordination very early they have a good chance to live a normal life.

    Deaf (acoustically impared person)
    They can develop like blind people. Deaf people have their own language, but this language has the big problem that only very few people are able to communicate together in this way. In the United Kingdom for example only 55.000 of 8 million deaf people are able to understand the sign - language or to do lip - reading. Among the "normal" people less people know the sign - language.

    People with the Down's syndrom:
    The Down's syndrom is caused in 50 per cent of all handicapped cases, because the mother was older than 35. The Down's syndrom is a kind of cerebral palsy which causes many disabilities. The greatest handicap is the learning disability. At the age of 40 there is a high risk of Alzheimer's disease. Some years ago people with the Down's syndrom only reached the age of 30 - but luckily today these people can live up to 60 years.

    People with Autism
    Autism is a very rare handicap - only 11 of 10.000 babies are born with this kind of disability. People with Autism often have major problems in language and speech. It is also very difficult for them to hold eye contact with other people.

    Physical by impared people:

    - Epilepsy:
    Grand Mal is the most common form of epilepsy, involving attacks with sudden black outs.
    - Spasticity:
    This is a kind of cerebral palsy. Spasticity affects some or all limbs.

15.3 Shame

A handicapped child is often a shame for the mother and so she gets depressed. Parents, who first wanted to have two children don't want to get a second child if the first one is handicapped. On one side they say that the handicapped child will need most of their time so that they won't have enough time for the second one and on the other side they are afraid that the second one will be handicapped too.

15.4 Integration at SZU

The history of our school began in 1945: it's purpose was to offer war invalids training to enable them to enter working life.Young physically handicapped students attended the classes, eventually "non - handicapped" students were incorporated. This system is also called "reverse integration" (because disabled students are given preference above "non - handicapped" ones). The system of eduction of handicapped students with normal students is often called main streaming.

Up to today the main aim of our school hasn't changed. The education of handicapped students with "non - handicapped" students has led to the fact that today approximately 300 of 800 impared students can receive the same education like "non - handicapped" children. So the impared students have the chance of integration into normal life. This model of school integration prevents the creation of disabled ghettos.

Friendships between handicapped and "normal" students can develop naturally and continue after school. Such friendships are for "normal" persons a new and important experience because you forget that your friend has a handicap and you learn to treat him like you treat your other "normal" friends - I mean you are not "overfriendly" to him. And for the handicapped student it is also important because he/she stays in contact with society and doesn't become an outsider. Another advantage is that a disabled student is not left alone with his/her problem.

There are no special curricula for handicapped students. Because of this the handicapped students keep up with the "normal" level. But to achieve this some extra services have to be introduced - of course they are not only for the disabled students:
    Each room of our school has been planned to cope with the needs of handicapped students The school - doctor, several physiotherapists and three specialists take care of the students A boarding school for about 80 students which is connected to the school makes it possible for handicapped students from the whole of Austria to attend the SZU There are a maximum of 24 students in our classes Class division in main subjects, support - teacher and team - teaching enable individual attention for each student. Each handicapped student can receive free tuition from his teachers to balance weaknesses. A team of teachers devote themselves to looking after the disabled students A one - year orientation course should prepare handicapped students for further training at SZU

15.5 Vocabulary

premature birth
to cope with
fertigwerden mit
to devote
to involve
to treat


16.1 What is renewable energy?

Renewable energy is the term used for those forms of energy that occur naturally and repeatedly in the environment - energy from the sun, the wind and the oceans.

16.2 How is Britain Developing the Renewable Energy Technologies?

Britain has had a development programme for harnessing renewable energy since the mid - 1970's. Today, some renewable technologies are already being deployed economically up and down the country, while others continue to be developed with a view to deployment early next century.

16.3 The Government's Renewable Programme

Renewable energy development in Britain has been supported by a Government programme since 1974, directed by the Renewables Branch of what is now Electricity Division of the Department of Trade and Industry. The programme's overall aim is to encourage exploitation of renewable energy resources to the fullest practical extent, wherever they have prospects of being economically competitive and environmentally acceptable.
In 1988, the Government set out a long - term strategy for the renewable energy technologies, comprising two main elements:

    first a continuing RD&D (Research, Development and Demonstration) and marketing programme and secondly the establishment of a legislative framework within which renewables could compete equitably with conventional sources of energy.

Sources of energy

16.4.1 Petroleum

Petroleum provides most of the energy used for transportation and heats millions of homes as well.

16.4.2 Coal

The major uses of coal include the production of electricity and steel. Coal also provides heat and power for many other industries. In Europe and Asia, coal heats countless homes. Chemists have developed various methods of turning coal into a gas or a liquid.

16.4.3 Natural gas

Natural gas is the cleanest and most convenient fossil fuel. The easiest transport is through pipelines. Natural gas is used for heat, power, cook, ...

16.4.4 Wood

It still furnishes a small percentage of the energy used in the world. But wood’s importance as a source of enregy will probably decrease in the future.

16.4.5 Water power and tidal energy

Taking energy from water is one of mankind's most ancient technical skills. But most water power projects require the construction of a dam or other expensive structure.
Today, power can be extracted from this renewable resource through the use of tidal, hydro or wave power devices.

16.4.6 Nuclear energy

Nuclear energy comes from fission, the splitting of the atoms of certain elements, especially uranium. Electricity is generated in fission reactors and creates huge amounts of energy from small amounts of fuel. Nuclear power plants produce tons of radioactive waste yearly and present the danger of accidental discharges of radioactivity.

16.4.7 Solar energy

Solar radiation is the ultimate source of most forms of renewable energy. By driving the world's climatic system, it gives rise to wind, wave and hydro power; by sustaining plant growth it produces the biofuels.
The term 'solar energy', however, normally refers only to those energy sources that derive directly from the Sun's light and warmth.

16.4.8 Wind power

Windmills have been used for centuries for grinding cereals and pumping water; and from around 1900, wind - driven turbines have also been used to generate electricity.
The first machines were simple devices with outputs of a few kilowatts. Modern wind turbines use advanced technology to give outputs up to several megawatts.
Wind itself costs nothing and creates no pollution but needs a strong, steady wind.

16.4.9 Geothermal power

Geothermal power is generated wherever there water comes into contact with heated underground rocks and turns into steam.

16.4.10 Solid wastes

Several cities throughout the world produce electricity by burning wastes. Producing fuels from wastes and crops

The term 'biofuel' is used for any solid, liquid or gaseous fuel produced from organic matter, either directly from plants or indirectly from industrial, commercial, domestic or agricultural wastes. Several biofuels technologies are already commercially viable, with industry now taking the lead in their development.

16.5 Forms of energy

16.5.1 Solar energy

The radiant energy given off by the sun, provides heat, light and nearly all other energy that exists on the earth.

16.5.2 Chemical energy

Chemical energy is produced by chemical changes. Released slowly through food, it powers all living things. Released quickly, chemical energy can launch a rocket.

16.5.3 Electric energy

It’s usually converted into other forms of energy to do work. One important form is mechanical energy, such as that produced by a drill.

16.5.4 Mechanical energy

It’s the energy that moves machines and other things. The mechanism of a watch moves because of the mechanical energy stored in ist spring.

16.5.5 Nuclear energy

Nuclear energy is released when certain atoms split or combine. Nuclear energy can power cities or propel submarines and other ships.

16.6 Energy efficiency

The development of renewable energy can't be sonsidered in isolation; at the same time as changes are made in energy generation, measures should be implemented to ensure that the energy produced is used more efficiently. There is a little point in increasing the range of available energy supplies if no steps are taken to optimise its use.
Britain has the potential, cost effectively, to reduces its annual energy consumption by as much as 20% - a saving worth about 10 billion pounds a year, using technology and techniques which are largely available currently. Savings are possible in every sector of the economy, and the Energy Efficiency Office, now part of the Department of the Environment, has spearheaded the drive to ensure the widest possible application of energy efficiency measures throughout Britain.

Demand and supply

Until recently interest in energy sources on a practical industrial scale centered on coal, oil and gas. Mankind has had a long period of dependence on the irreplaceable stores of energy. Now there is active interest into the possibilities of other sources, which are inexhaustible.
Inexhaustible sources of energy:
- solar radiation
- gravitational and rotational forces
- subterranean heat from radioactive decay
- nuclear fission or fusion.

The world - wide energy demand is expected to grow at 3,3 percent each year.
Worrying aspects are the heavy dependence of the developed countries on oil, a large part of which comes from a politically unstable region. The oil crises of 1973 led all consumer countries to take measures to seek other sources of energy in use.
Coal has still large reserves, but reserves of oil will be consumed in 20 years. Nuclear energy is a big danger for our environment. But because of the increasing supply on energy the dependence on nuclear energy seems inescapable. New sources must be found and used as soon as possible.

16.8 Recycling

"Recycling", a term almost unknown a few years ago, is very popular now. A few decades ago people were used to use things more often, but the American Way of Life turned us into a society of wastmakers. But increasing raw material prices made us think. We try not to use materials wich can't be recycled. In many parts of Austria you have to segregate (trennen) the different kinds of waste like paper, glass, plastics and so on. There will, however, always remain ssome components of the waste steam which cannot be recycled at all, but we should try our best.

16.9 Climate change

In December 1992, the Department of the Environment published a consultion document "Climate Change - Our National Programme for CO2 Emissions". The document, is intended to simulate public debate in Britain about the ways in which individuals, businesses and other organisations can contribute to the national programme for limiting emissions of carbon dioxide up to the year 2000.
It also describes options for Government measures, including economic steps - seen as "likely to provide the most flexible and cost effective way of encouraging action to limit emissions".


umfassen, einschließen
domestic wastes
Einrichtung, EinfĂŒhrung
das Fördern
Umfang, Ausdehnung
Brenn -, Treib -, Kraftstoff
legislative frame
gesetzlicher Rahmen
nuclear fission
nuclear fusion
etw. in Aussicht haben
subterranean heat
to attain
to contribute
to encourage sb.
jmd. ermutigen
to grind
to implement
to release
to spearhead
hier: anfĂŒhren
durchfĂŒhrbar, lebensfĂ€hig
waste heat


17.1 Phrases for the beginning

My name is Mr. L and I am about (here) to take my oral exam in English.

I have choosen question number X, the topic Y under the category Z .

In the next few minutes I am going to talk about Y .

My presentation covers (will cover) the following issues: ___

I will start with (the first sub issue) ___ and do my best to keep it short and precise.

17.2 Other phrases

Let me first ... .

I'll talk about ... .

The next topic I want talk about is ___ .

Now about the ___ .

At the beginning of the 20thcentury.

In the middle of ...

At the end of ...

Changes between the pre - version

(standing: 16.05.1997)

new working out:

    Environment (Acid Rain) Brave New World History of Great Britain Plastic money Layout of a Business Letter Renewable energy in Britain

text changes:

    Rasism Rasism Freeing the American slaves What is apartheid? Britain and the British Secondary education

vocabulary changes:

    Human Rights What are Human Rights? Human Rights New Zealand The first settlers Handicapped people Introduction

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