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The British Isles
Many thousands of years ago the mainland of Europe stretched much further west than now, and by the sinking of the land, the ocean covered a great deal of the continent. The British Isles and neighbouring small islands were left above the surface of the sea, because they were the highest parts of the land. The water flowed into the valleys among the hills, thus producing an uneven coast and many good harbours.
There are many facts which prove this. None of the seas round the British Isles are very deep. In fact in some parts of the North Sea there is a depth of less than six meters. The rounded, flat-topped hills that give character to the English scenery have been worn down by the slowly-moving sheet of ice that once covered the whole of Northern Europe. The white chalk cliffs of Southern England correspond to those of Northern France, while the lowlands of the east coast correspond to the lowlands of Holland. The forests that once covered the greater part of the country were made up of common European trees. Nowadays there are practically no forests in Britain, but there are very many leafy trees that give beauty to the countryside.
The British Isles
The British Isles lie about the same distance from the Equator as that part of Russia lying between Moscow and Volgograd. The climate of the country, however, is quite different from that of the European part of Russia. It is much milder. Even in the most northern parts of Scotland, snow never lies very long on the ground in winter, while in the South of England, snow falls only a few times during the winter and never lies long. Besides this, the rivers never freeze. In England there is much rain and fog in winter, and few sunny days. Summers are never very hot, and there is often very much rain. Generally speaking, Great Britain is a very damp country.
One of the chef reasons for this dampness is that a continuous stream of warm water, called the Gulf Stream, crosses the Atlantic Ocean from the warm South and washes the western and northern coast of the country. The Gulf Stream flows on past Northern Scotland, Norway and to the northern coasts of Russia. It is due to the Gulf Stream that our port Murmansk is free of ice all through the winter.
Development of English
English is spoken by over a billion people around the world, in other words, by more than a quarter of the world’s population. It is spoken as a mother tongue in the UK, in former colonies such as Australia and New Zeland, and of course, by the vast majority of the North American population. It is the second or official language in most of the former empires, and of course, it is studied as a foreign language all over the world, but particularly in Europe now. This has made it a truly international language. It is the language of shipping and aviation, of science and technology and of commerce. Really, the language spoken by the population of small island in the Northern Hemisphere reached a widespread use. Its introduction to the New World in the 17th century resulted in this hybrid language becoming the second oldest version of English, and the most widely spoken American English. Then English and American English went east and south. The colonization of South America, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa were in different ways and linguistically as well. In India English now shares the status of the official language. With Hindi it is spoken by over 70 million people – more than entire population of the British Isles. So English may be really considered to be an international language!
Для правильного выполнения контрольной работы №3 необходимо усвоить следующие разделы английской грамматики:
US Population Will Fall After 2050
The US population is likely to rise by about a third to 309 million by the year 2050 and then begin to decline according to the statistic Bureau.
It was the first time the bureau had classified zero population growth as a likely outcome in this country.
The bureau also said 21.7 percent of the population is likely to be over age 65 by 2050, up from 11.4 percent now, while blacks would probably make up 16.8 percent then, as against 11.9 percent now.
The report said female life expectancy is expected to rise to 83.6 years in 2050 from 78.3 now and male life expectancy to 75.1 years from 70.7.
The US population is now about 232 million and is growing at a rate of about nine-tenths of 1 percent a year. The bureau said this growth rate is likely to fade gradually, and the nation is likely to reach zero population growth by the middle of the next century.
The bureau is assuming, among many other things that the percentage of women in the labour force will continue to rise.
Large increases in the proportion of extremely old people are expected to increase the need for nursing homes, for example, and the general aging of the population will further drain the Social Security and Medicare systems for old-age pensions and medical care. All this will happen as the proportion of working-age people that can support the elderly is declining.
England Needs More Rain
Those who complain about our weather may be surprised to learn that there are some people in England who want more rain. We certainly have greater amount of water than many other countries, but we don’t get as much as we need. Two or three weeks in the summer without rain and we have problems. The trouble is partly that the rain falls in the wrong place, partly that we can’t store enough of it, and partly that we use much more than we need.
Most of Britain’s rain falls in Wales and Scotland, but we need it in the drier South-East England, and Midlands.
Of course we store this water and send it to the other parts of the country. Birmingham, for example, the second largest city in England, gets its water from North Wales. But our reservoirs are now a hundred years old and need to be much larger. Both at home and in our factories we use much more water than we did a hundred years ago. It takes 100,000 gallons of water to make one car. Factories at least pay for the water they employ, but in our homes we only pay to have water. After that we can use as much as we want. Finally, what we have left in our rivers is so dirty that we can’t use it.
To cope with this problem isn’t simple. First we must find a way of keeping our water clean. Factories needn’t use so much, they must learn to reuse water and go ahead with studying the new ways of using water from the sea.
2. Factories must learn to reuse water, mustn’t they?
3. Do the English factories pay for the water?
4. Where does most of Britain’s rain fall?
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