This is a Clilstore unit. You can link all words to dictionaries.

Energy. Lesson 4. Energy inequality

 Lesson designed by: Alejandro Robles García

Image of the Earth at night taken by satellite in the year 2000. What becomes immediately obvious is that the most well-lit regions are the countries with the most economic and political power: Europe, Japan and the United States.

A.18 Read the following text about energy innequality and answer the questions.

Imagine trying to keep a hospital running without a reliable energy supply. You couldn’t refrigerate vaccines or medicines. You would struggle to sterilise equipment, light operating theatres or run diagnostic equipment such as x-ray machines, centrifuges or ultrasound. Services would have to end at sundown, with doctors doing their late rounds with torches or lanterns.

Despite the difficulties of running healthcare without electricity, that’s exactly what one billion people depend on. 46% of India’s health facilities, serving 580 million people, have no electricity. 30% of Africa’s health facilities do without power.

It’s not a matter of life and death, but a 21st century education needs electricity too. I can speak from personal experience here. My primary school education was at a local Malagasy school. There was no glass in the windows, so when it rained we had to close the shutters. It was then too dark to do any work. There was usually electric light, but it was one dim bulb for the whole classroom. In the big storms the power would often go out entirely, and the teacher would tell us stories in the dark until it was time to go home.

That was in the 80s, and we did okay with our limited lighting. An education with unreliable or non-existent power would actually be a bigger disadvantage now, because you wouldn’t be able to use computers. In our modern world, schools need to be able to use IT, for learning and finding information online, but also for keeping records and preparing lessons.

Full text in:

1. What problems are mentioned in text about a lack of energy supply in hospitals?

2. What problems had the writer in the school?

3. Why these problems would be more important now?


 Visualising global inequality.

A third of the world’s population does not have access to affordable electricity, and that presents us with one of the development problems of our era – how to deliver energy for everyone without destroying the climate in the process. 

The current definition of modern energy access, as used by the International Energy Agency, is 100 kWh per person per year. The image below, which is from the Center for Global Development, shows how far that amount of power would last us in different parts of the world. An American would use that in three days, a European in five. The average Ethiopian would use that much power in two years.

Full text can be found in:

A.19. Speaking activity. Discuss with a partner.

1. Do you think is it fair that a third of world´s population does not have acces to affordable energy?

1. Why  can be dangreous for the climate to deliver energy for everyone?

2. What measures could be taken to protect the environment?

Useful phrases/structures

  •   In my opinion/ I think that….
  •   Energy for everybody means…
  •   A higher energy consumption has some negative effects for the environment such as…
  •   Some possible measures to protect the environment could be…..
  •   What do you think?
  •   I agree/ don´t agree because…

 A. 20 Watch the video How to save energy and fill in all the gaps in the exercise Save energy.

A. 21 Now write a list of the things that you are willing to do to save energy.
Example: I will turn off the tv when I don´t watch it.
A.22. Project
Increase your knowledge about  energy sources. Working in teams, choose one of them and prepare a presentation with power point. It has to answer the following questions:
1.   How is this energy source produced?
2.   Who and when discovered how to use this type of energy?
3.   What are its advantages and disadvantages?
4.   What countries use more this energy source?
5.   What is the Spanish context regarding this energy?
6.  Other important facts related to this energy source.
Some websites in which you can find some useful information:

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