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VOA慢速英语:冠状病毒带来的环境变化能持久吗?

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Will Environmental Changes Resulting from the Coronavirus Last?

冠状病毒带来的环境变化能持久吗?

The coronavirus crisis has resulted in major drops in pollution across the world. Environmental groups welcome this change. But, some experts warn that pollution is likely to return to levels before the crisis once life returns to normal.

冠状病毒危机导致全球污染程度大幅降低。环保组织对此表示欢迎。但一些专家警告称,一旦生活恢复正常,污染状况很有可能会回到疫情之前的水平。

Skies have been clearerin cities from New York to Paris to Beijing as governments closed businesses and schools and issued stay-at-home orders.

随着政府关闭企业和学校并发布居家隔离令,从纽约到巴黎再到北京全球各地天空都变得更加晴朗。

Satellite data shows nitrogen dioxide has dropped about 30 percent in parts of the Northeast United States compared to the previous five years. Nitrogen dioxide is a major form of air cpollution.

卫星数据显示,与前五年相比美国东北部地区的二氧化氮减少了约30%。二氧化氮是空气污染的一种主要形式。

Michelle Manion is an economist with the U.S.-based World Resources Institute. On a recent day in Boston, Massachusetts, she noted that the air was so clear that she could read the letters on top of the Prudential building, a well-known city structure.

米歇尔·梅尼恩是美国世界资源研究所的一位经济学家。近期在马萨诸塞州波士顿的某一天,她注意到那里的天空非常晴朗,她甚至能看清该市著名的地标建筑摩天大厦顶部的字母。

“I’ve never been able to do that,” Manion told VOA. “It’s really amazing.”

“这种情况之前从来没有过,” 梅尼恩告诉《美国之音》,“这真的很棒。”

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker began ordering schools and businesses to close on March 24. Since then, traffic on area roads has been cut by about two-thirds. "People are not commuting," Manion said. "It's a huge difference."

马萨诸塞州州长查理·贝克自3月24日起开始命令学校和企业停课歇业。此后,大街小巷的交通流量减少了约三分之二。 梅尼恩表示:“人们不需要上下班出行,差异非常明显。”

Large drops in road traffic and air travel have greatly reduced oil demand worldwide. The United States uses more oil than any other country. But, U.S. demand fell 31 percent below average for January to mid-March, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported.

道路交通和航空旅行的大幅减少极大地降低了全球的石油需求。美国的石油消耗量大于其他任何国家。但据美国能源情报署报道,1月至3月中旬这段期间美国的石油需求较平均水平下降了31%。

Drops in production for fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas may lower pollution emissions by 5.5 percent this year, the British climate research website Carbon Brief predicts. That would be the largest reduction ever by far – more than four times the decrease during the 2008-2009 Great Recession.

英国气候研究网的卡本·布里夫预测,今年煤炭、石油和天然气等化石燃料产量的下降可能会使污染物排放降低5.5%。而这将是迄今为止最大的降幅——是2008-2009年大萧条时期降幅的四倍以上。

But some experts say such reductions are not likely to last. "The general expectation is that most of this will pick up once the crisis is over," Michael Gerrard told VOA. He is director of the Saban Center for Climate Change Law at New York’s Columbia University.

但是一些专家表示,这种情况不太可能持续太久。迈克尔•杰拉德告诉《美国之音》:“大家都认为一旦危机结束,大多数问题将恢复如常。” 迈克尔是纽约哥伦比亚大学萨班气候变化法研究中心的主任。

Satellite images have shown recent rises in air pollution in China, which reopened some industries after reporting the spread of the new coronavirus had slowed.

据卫星图像显示,最近中国的空气污染有所加重。在报告新冠病毒传播速度减缓之后,中国部分行业复工。

The coronavirus crisis has also affected renewable energy companies. BloombergNEF (BNEF), an energy research organization, recently lowered its 2020 estimate for new wind power construction worldwide by 12 percent. The organization’s estimate for solar power was cut by eight percent.

冠状病毒危机还影响了可再生能源公司。能源研究组织彭博新能源网最近将其2020年全球新风电建设估算降低了12%。该组织对太阳能建设的估算减少了8%。

In addition, investment in renewable energy is low and electric vehicle sales are down 40 percent compared to last year. But Gerrard says those drops are likely temporary.

此外,可再生能源行业投资降低,电动汽车的销量与去年相比也下降了40%。但杰拉德表示,这种情况可能是暂时的。

"The cost of building solar and wind has plummeted so much in recent years that it's highly competitive. It's really often outbidding fossil fuels," Gerrard said. "That hasn't changed. We've seen a slowdown in the construction. But I think that should pick up once people are fully back to work."

杰拉德说:“近年来,建造太阳能和风能的成本大幅下降,并因此获得了很高的竞争力。实际上,它的价格往往会高于化石燃料。现在这一点也没有改变。虽然建设进度放缓,但我认为一旦人们完全复工,情况就会恢复如常。”

However, BloombergNEF's estimates for renewable energy expansion show the world falling short of climate change targets set by the 2015 United Nations Paris agreement. A main goal of that agreement is to keep Earth from warming more than two degrees Celsius.

然而,据彭博新能源网对可再生能源的前景预估显示,世界各国未能达到2015年联合国巴黎协定所设定的气候变化目标。该协议的主要目标是防止地球变暖超过两摄氏度。

Logan Goldie-Scot is BNEF's head of clean energy. He told VOA that the deeper the economic damage is from the coronavirus, the more difficult it will be for the world to reach the U.N. target.

洛根·戈迪·斯科特是彭博新能源网清洁能源的负责人。他告诉《美国之音》,冠状病毒给经济造成的损害越深,全世界实现联合国目标的难度就越大。

"If it ends up delaying or making it harder to finance and build renewable energy projects, then this will make what was already a challenge even harder," Goldie-Scot said.

戈迪·斯科特说:“如果最终筹集资金并建设可再生能源的项目延期或变得更加困难,那么它将使本来就面临的挑战变得难上加难。”

I’m Bryan Lynn.

布莱恩·林恩报道。

 

Will Environmental Changes Resulting from the Coronavirus Last?

The coronavirus crisis has resulted in major drops in pollution across the world. Environmental groups welcome this change. But, some experts warn that pollution is likely to return to levels before the crisis once life returns to normal.

Skies have been clearer in cities from New York to Paris to Beijing as governments closed businesses and schools and issued stay-at-home orders.

Satellite data shows nitrogen dioxide has dropped about 30 percent in parts of the Northeast United States compared to the previous five years. Nitrogen dioxide is a major form of air pollution.

Michelle Manion is an economist with the U.S.-based World Resources Institute. On a recent day in Boston, Massachusetts, she noted that the air was so clear that she could read the letters on top of the Prudential building, a well-known city structure.

“I’ve never been able to do that,” Manion told VOA. “It’s really amazing.”

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker began ordering schools and businesses to close on March 24. Since then, traffic on area roads has been cut by about two-thirds. "People are not commuting," Manion said. "It's a huge difference."

Large drops in road traffic and air travel have greatly reduced oil demand worldwide. The United States uses more oil than any other country. But, U.S. demand fell 31 percent below average for January to mid-March, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported.

Drops in production for fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas may lower pollution emissions by 5.5 percent this year, the British climate research website Carbon Brief predicts. That would be the largest reduction ever by far – more than four times the decrease during the 2008-2009 Great Recession.

But some experts say such reductions are not likely to last. "The general expectation is that most of this will pick up once the crisis is over," Michael Gerrard told VOA. He is director of the Saban Center for Climate Change Law at New York’s Columbia University.

Satellite images have shown recent rises in air pollution in China, which reopened some industries after reporting the spread of the new coronavirus had slowed.

The coronavirus crisis has also affected renewable energy companies. BloombergNEF (BNEF), an energy research organization, recently lowered its 2020 estimate for new wind power construction worldwide by 12 percent. The organization’s estimate for solar power was cut by eight percent.

In addition, investment in renewable energy is low and electric vehicle sales are down 40 percent compared to last year. But Gerrard says those drops are likely temporary.

"The cost of building solar and wind has plummeted so much in recent years that it's highly competitive. It's really often outbidding fossil fuels," Gerrard said. "That hasn't changed. We've seen a slowdown in the construction. But I think that should pick up once people are fully back to work."

However, BloombergNEF's estimates for renewable energy expansion show the world falling short of climate change targets set by the 2015 United Nations Paris agreement. A main goal of that agreement is to keep Earth from warming more than two degrees Celsius.

Logan Goldie-Scot is BNEF's head of clean energy. He told VOA that the deeper the economic damage is from the coronavirus, the more difficult it will be for the world to reach the U.N. target.

"If it ends up delaying or making it harder to finance and build renewable energy projects, then this will make what was already a challenge even harder," Goldie-Scot said.

I’m Bryan Lynn.


内容来自 VOA英语学习网https://www.chinavoa.com/show-8789-242362-1.html
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