Environmental generalisations and recommendations

Ecological vocabulary/ Useful language for writing reports/ Hedging language

Objective Proficiency Unit 13

Use phrases like those below to explain people’s attitudes to, actions related to etc on environment issues. Does your partner agree?

 

According to

Amongst people I know

In my experience

I get the feeling that

(From discussions I’ve had on the subject) I have formed the impression that

A survey has shown that

It wouldn’t surprise me if

(absolutely) all

virtually all

practically all

very nearly all

almost all

the vast majority of

most people

many people/ a large number of people

a considerable number of/ a substantial number of people

quite a lot of/ a fairly large number of

a substantial minority of

not many/ few

a small minority of

very few

a tiny minority of

almost no

practically no

virtually no

 

activists

baby boomers

civil servants

experts

Generation X

middle-aged people

millennials

people in developed countries

people in developing countries

people in East Asia

people in this city

people in this country

politicians

researchers

retired people

rich people

students

teachers

teenagers

the middle class

the upper middle class

voters

young children

young people

 

always/ without fail

almost always

usually/ generally

often/ frequently

occasionally

seldom/ rarely

hardly ever

almost never

  ————————–

accept

are (un)informed about

are concerned/ worried about

are confused by

are considering

are cutting down

are interested in

are sceptical about

are well informed about

aren’t…

believe

buy

can afford

can’t…

consider

discuss

don’t…

expect

go to

have opinions on

ignore

know about

listen to/ watch

look into

misunderstand

panic about

pay attention to

prioritise

read

realise

spend money on

support

think about

trust… on

try to…

understand

use

visit

vote for

wonder about

would(n’t)…

(air/ water/ noise/ light) pollution

(commercial) fishing/ whaling

(hydroelectric) dams

(plastic/ glass) bottles

(soil) erosion

acid rain

air miles

allergies (hay fever etc)

arresting/ fining/ imprisoning people for…

asthma/ breathing difficulties

banning…

biodiversity

biofuels

birth defects

carbon dioxide/ CO2

carbon footprint

carpools

charismatic megafauna

consumer campaigns

coral bleaching

deforestation

disposable razors/ pens/ nappies/ chopsticks

ecological education

ecoterrorism

electric vehicles

endangered animals

energy consumption

energy efficiency

environmental activists (Greenpeace, Sea Shepherd, etc)

extinctions

extreme weather (blizzards, hurricanes, etc)

farming

fossil fuels (coal, natural gas, oil)

fuel cells/ hydrogen fuel

gardens

global warming

GM crops/ GM foods

green activism

green belt

green goods

green parties

green spaces

green taxes/ carbon tax

greenhouse gases

hybrid cars

insulation

invasive species (Japanese knotweed, etc)

ivory

landfills

locally produced foods

national parks/ wildlife preserves

nuclear energy/ waste

organic food/ farming

packaging

pesticides/ herbicides

plastic (carrier) bags

population

public transport

radiation (sickness)

renewable energy (wind farms, solar energy, etc)

rising sea levels

rubbish (= garbage/ trash)

rubbish dumps

sewage

skin cancer

smog

subsidies for…

the construction industry

the ozone layer

the smart grid

the three Rs

thermal energy

urbanisation

vegetarianism/ veganism

water use

zoos

 

Ask about anything above you don’t understand, making generalisations each time.

—————————

Environmental recommendations

Give advice on how the environment could be improved, by:

consumers

companies

the general public

the government

international organisations

etc

using the right level of strength of language each time. 

 

Although it depends on your situation

For most people…

In this country

In the short term

In the medium term

As soon as possible

Over the long term

 

….have no choice but to…

By far the best option is…

… must make sure to…

… needs to…/ It is necessary to…

I would recommend…/ My (main) recommendation would be…/ My (main) suggestion would be…/ My advice would be to…/ It is worth…/ I would suggest…/ I’d advise…/ … would be effective./ … would benefit from…/ … ought to…

… would probably work.

It might be a good idea to…/ It might be useful to…

… could…

… could possibly…

It can’t hurt to…

It is worth considering…

It might be worth considering…

 

accept

attempt to

ban/ forbid

be sceptical about

build more

buy

consider

cut (down on)

decrease

do something about

find an alternative for

find out

fund

ignore

increase

invest money in

listen to

look into

pay attention to

prioritise

read

research

spend money on

stop

support

take an interest in

think about

trust… on

try to

use

visit

vote for

watch

worry (more) about

 

——————————

Generalising and giving advice language presentation

(absolutely) all

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

virtually no

 

 

always/ without fail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

almost never

 

 

….have no choice but to…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It might be worth considering…

—————————- 

Look at the mixed answers below to help. Some could be next to each other.

Look at the ones which are grouped together in the table above to help more.

Check your answers below.

———————- 

Mixed answers

(absolutely) all

a considerable number of

a fairly large number of

a large number of people

a small minority of

a substantial minority of

a substantial number of people

a tiny minority of

almost all

almost no

many people

most people

not many/ few

practically all

practically no

quite a lot of

the vast majority of

very few

very nearly all

virtually all

virtually no

 

almost always

almost never

always

frequently

generally

hardly ever

occasionally

often

rarely

seldom

usually

without fail

 

 


 

… could possibly…

… could…

… must make sure to…

… needs to…

… ought to…

… would be effective.

… would benefit from…

… would probably work.

….have no choice but to…

By far the best option is…

I would recommend…

I would suggest…

I’d advise…

It can’t hurt to…

It is necessary to…

It is worth considering…

It is worth…

It might be a good idea to…

It might be useful to…

It might be worth considering…

My (main) recommendation would be…

My (main) suggestion would be…

My advice would be to…

 ——————————

 
Suggested answers
 

(absolutely) all

virtually all

practically all

very nearly all

almost all

the vast majority of

most people

many people/ a large number of people

a considerable number of/ a substantial number of people

quite a lot of/ a fairly large number of

a substantial minority of

not many/ few

a small minority of

very few

a tiny minority of

almost no

practically no

virtually no

 

always/ without fail

almost always

usually/ generally

often/ frequently

occasionally

seldom/ rarely

hardly ever

almost never

 

….have no choice but to…

By far the best option is…

… must make sure to…

… needs to…/ It is necessary to…

I would recommend…/ My (main) recommendation would be…/ My (main) suggestion would be…/ My advice would be to…/ It is worth…/ I would suggest…/ I’d advise…/ … would be effective./ … would benefit from…/ … ought to…

… would probably work.

It might be a good idea to…/ It might be useful to…

… could…

… could possibly…

It can’t hurt to…

It is worth considering…

It might be worth considering…

—————–

 PDF version for easy saving and printing: environmental-generalisations-and-recommendations