The rapid population growth has been driven by the world’s poorest countries. More global challenges are ahead.




Read the article:


and decide if the sentences below are

True or False?

1. In the beginning of the XIXth century there were more than 1000 000 000 people in the world.

2. The fertility rate in low-income countries has remained steady in spite of the fact women can easily acquire birth control devices there.

3. Providing for the new children that will be born in the years to come will significantly affect public spending.

4. The more people are born, the more damage is caused to the environment.

5. The United Nations predicts it’ll take 22 years for the world population to grow by one billion.

6. The fact so few children were born in China in 2021 will not hinder its economy.


ANSWERS: 1F; 2F; 3T; 4T; 5F; 6F




  • to roam – to move about or travel, especially without a clear idea of what you are going to do
  • to upend – to affect or upset drastically; to turn sth upside down
  • fertility rate – the average number of children that could be born to a woman over her lifetime
  • unsustainable – not able to be continued at the same level, rate, etc
  • to mitigate – make sth less unpleasant, serious, or painful
  • to hamper – to prevent someone doing something easily



Practice makes perfect



and then fill in the blank spaces with the missing words. Use ONE word per blank space.


In 1980, two American professors bet $1,000 1. …………. a question with stakes that couldn’t be higher: woould the earth run 2. ……….. of resources to sustain a growing human population? One of them was Stanford biologist Paul Ehrlich, 3. ……… wrote the bestselling 1968 book, ”The Population Bomb.” The global population 4. …… grown rapidly since World War II, and Ehrlich predicted that millions would starve 5. …….. death as the poulation increased faster  than the food supply. He drew from the ideas of 18th century economist Thomas Malthus ad related work from the 20th century. Malthus had posited that population growth, if unchecked over time, would always outpace food supply. Through the 1970s, it seemed like Ehrlich 6. …….. right: famines, pollution and political unrest had many concerned that humanity was 6. …… the brink of such a crisis. (…) Betting against Ehrlich was Julian Simon, a professor of business and economics. He analyzed historic data from around the world and found no correlation between a growing population and a decrease in standards of living. In fact, he found 7. ……. opposite. He argued that Ehrlich’s work and, that of Malthus before him was based 8. ……… theoretical calculations, while the real-world data told a different story. But then, he departed from the data himself, claiming human ingenuity would always find alternatives 9. ……… compensate 10. ……. diminishing resources.


ANSWERS: 1. on; 2. out; 3. who; 4. had; 5. to; 6. on; 7. the; 8. on; 9. to; 10. for


Complete the gaps in the sentences below with some of the words in Glossary

(make sure their form is correct).


1. Technology has …………. traditional ideas of what people watch and when.

2. We’ve been trying to ………….. the conflict between these two groups.

3. If your mother took care of the kids, we’d be able to …………. the city easily.

4. The bad weather ……………. rescue operations.

5. We are all concerned about the ………….. nature of the present situation.


ANSWERS: 1. upended; 2. mitigate; 3. roam; 4. hampered; 5. unsustainable



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