Listening

Warm Up

Helpful Words and Phrases

Listen and repeat.

  1. excess
    • ex. Only five people came to the party, so now we have a lot of excess food.
  2. generate
    • ex. The dam generates electricity for the town.
  3. renewable energy
    • ex. Wind power is a type of renewable energy.
  4. thanks to
    • ex. Thanks to Mark’s goal, we won the game!
  5. a subsidy
    • ex. The local government has a subsidy to help new parents.

Article

Read the article below and answer your tutor's questions.

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The U.K. has a new plan to pay homes for their green energy. The plan is called the Smart Export Guarantee. Starting in 2020, it will pay families and businesses that sell their excess electricity back to energy companies. This will benefit homes and companies that use solar panels for electricity.

In recent years, the U.K. has generated around 30% of its total electricity using renewable energy sources. Thanks to a government subsidy, around 800,000 households and 30,000 businesses have installed solar panels since 2011. However, this subsidy ended in April 2019. Its replacement, the Smart Export Guarantee, does not begin until 2020.

Many renewable energy supporters are worried about the long gap between the old government subsidy and the Smart Export Guarantee. In May 2019, U.K. sales of solar panels already decreased by 94% compared to one month before. Experts explained that many people don’t want to buy expensive solar panels without a government subsidy, so the rest of 2019 will probably be a bad time for solar energy.

Discussion

Choose a topic and discuss the questions with your tutor.

Energy

  • Do you think your country uses too much electricity? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think your country should switch to 100% renewable energy? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think that any alternative energy sources will become common (ex. corn, body heat)? Why or why not? Discuss.

Subsidies

  • Do you think your government should subsidize renewable energy? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think your government should subsidize families with small children? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think your government should subsidize school expenses (ex. textbooks, uniforms)? Why or why not? Discuss.