Rapidly transforming societies. That's the only option left,
says the UN, after a failure to cut carbon. This is News Review from BBC Learning English. I'm
Neil. And I'm Beth. Make sure you watch to the end to learn
vocabulary to talk about the story. And don't forget to subscribe
to our channel, like this video, and try the quiz on our website. Now, let's hear more about the story. 'Countries must reprioritize climate
change or the world faces catastrophe.' That's what the head of the UN
has said ahead of COP27, the climate conference
being held in Egypt, this month.

Scientists say government
failures to meet carbon targets will lead to a rise
of more than 1.5 degrees. Only radically changing society  
will save us from climate
disaster, they say. You have been looking at the headlines, Beth. What's the vocabulary? We have 'landmark', 'greenwashing' and 'warning shots'. This is News Review from BBC
Learning English. Let's have a look
at our first headline. This one is
from Euronews: So, COP27, which is the annual international
climate conference, is being described as a landmark -that's the word we're looking at.

Right now, Beth, first of all, I want you to think
of a famous city – London. When I mentioned London, what comes to mind? I think of Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, The London Eye,
the Houses of Parliament. OK. So, these are
important memorable places. Buildings. Literally, marks on the land –
landmarks. Is that what we mean here? Well, they are landmarks – but, no, that's not
what we're talking about here. So, in the headline, 'landmark' is used
as an adjective to mean that something is 'so important that
it might cause a dramatic change'. OK. So, the headline
is suggesting that COP27 might be
a landmark conference – a point where an important change is made.
Is that right? Yeah. That's right. And this adjective 'landmark'
is often put together with words like 'event', 'decision' or 'day'. So, for example, if we think about
when women first got the right to vote, this was a landmark event. It was very important
for women's rights. And can we use any other words or
vocabulary to describe a similar thing? Yeah.

We could say that something is
a 'turning point' or a 'milestone', for example. OK. Let's have a look
at that one more time. Let's have a look at
our next headline. This is from the Guardian: OK. So, Greta Thunberg, the very famous,
young Swedish climate activist is going to skip the
COP27 Climate Conference. That means she's not going to attend,
because she thinks it's an example of greenwashing. And 'greenwashing'
is the word we're looking at. Well, I know the word 'green',
and I know the word 'washing'. But what's the sense? Well, imagine a company that sells
something bad for the environment, like a plastic bottle,
but they cover it with a green label that symbolises
being environmentally friendly.

It might have nice pictures
of forests on it, and it has words
like organic and natural ingredients and recyclable. OK. So, you're saying this bottle looks like it's really good
for the environment. But, actually, it's just a plastic bottle, and plastic
isn't very good. So, we're saying it's just marketing. Exactly. Yeah. This is greenwashing,
and it is just a marketing approach that basically makes it look like an
organisation is helping the planet, and that makes the customer want to buy
the product – they want to help the planet too.

But, actually, it's not really helping at all. Right, so, in this headline, we see that Greta Thunberg thinks that COP27 is an example
of greenwashing. She thinks that, actually, they are not taking it seriously. They just want
people to think they are. Yeah. That's right. And the headline uses
the adjective 'greenwashing'. It describes the event, in this case,
the conference, but we can also use greenwash
as a verb. So, that is the action of making
something look more environmentally friendly than it actually is.

And a related idea and word is 'sportswashing'. That means when an organisation
or a country hosts or supports a sporting event to try
and make themselves look better. Let's take a look at that again. Let's look at our next headline. This one comes from
Inside Climate News: The headline says that
the world is off course. That means 'going in the
wrong direction', metaphorically, to reach those climate targets.
And we are looking at the expression 'warning shots'. This has got something to
do with guns, hasn't it? Yeah. So, literally, in war, one side might fire a shot in the air
or it might come from a cannon, and this is saying we are here – prepare yourself.
It is a warning. But, in the headline, it's used metaphorically – there's actually no guns here.

That's right. So, these new scientific
reports say that unless we stay within 1.5 degree limit, something really bad is going to happen. Exactly. It is a warning shot
to the world. And, in this case,
that bad thing that would happen is the climate would collapse. Now, the expression 'warning shot'
is used very frequently in news media, isn't it? Yes, it is. It sounds very dramatic,
and it creates a really powerful image in the mind of the reader,
and that helps them remember the story
a little bit more. Yeah. Let's have a look
at that one more time. We've had 'landmark' – an important event
that could cause big changes. 'Greenwashing' – companies say
it's environmentally friendly, but is it, really? And 'warning shots' -signals that show
action is needed.

Don't forget
there's a quiz on our website: Thank you for
joining us, and goodbye. Bye..



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here