976 Katia's Green Concerns

Katia talks about some problems and possible solutions for her country.


Enam: Katia, what are the environmental problems in your country?

Katia: Well, I can think of three problems. One is water drought. The scarcity of water. Second, we have a lot of air pollution, and third a lot of deforestation.

Enam: OK, so can you tell me about deforestation in your country?

Katia: Well, Mexico is big and we have areas that have a lot of trees, but unfortunately many factories have been moving into that area in particular and they take down the trees. That has been happening for so long that the areas have increased and because of that a lot of indigenous are displaced as well as a lot the animals have died or it has decreased so unfortunately that has been a big problem in certain parts of Mexico, but then of course there are some things that are being done. For example, the government has placed certain areas that are to remain untouched and also they are bringing more trees in certain areas and planting them and hopefully it will bring the green area back to where it was before.

Enam: Really, that's good. But how bad is the water scarcity problem?

Katia: Well, water scarcity I think is one of the major problems Mexico has. For example, I can just talk about Mexico city. Mexico City was built on top of a lake and we Mexicans have been using the water from the lake to supply out water needs but this has been going on for so long that we basically use all the water that was left and now we trying to figure out where to bring water from. This is a big problem that Mexico faces. We don't have many wells that we can get water from. And unfortunately also a big problem is with the piping system a lot of lakes and actually a big percentage of our water is lost through leaks. What is being done about that problem? Well, first, they're fixing the pipes. That's a basic way to start. Also, we are only allowed to use water certain days of the week to water our garden or wash our trees or wash our cars and so yeah, and I think the Mexicans are becoming more conscious on how to use water, so I think hopefully that will help with the water scarcity problem.

Enam: And what about air pollution?

Katia: Well, actually we also have the air pollution problem, and if you go to Mexico, if it's any day of the week, from Monday to Friday, it's very hard to see the sun. It's always very cloudy. Your skin becomes very dirty actually, and it's very hard to breathe because of the high contamination. There are many cars: too many cars that is really hard to breathe, and you can tell that also by sun. Saturday and Sunday. you can actually see the sun because a lot of the people are not driving since it's the weekend, and also it was said that you could measure the pollution of Mexico City by counting how many dead birds you can find on the streets because of the high contamination, but yeah unfortunately a very bad situation however Mexico has put some rules that if you have a car, you can only drive on certain days of the week, and that anytime so hopefully that has ... that will help in the future to prevent much more contamination and of course there are other things that have been done. There are more parks to help with the pollution, but yeah, I think this is the main thing they have done regarding the transportation. Just preventing people from driving as much as they want.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson



The scarcity of water is a concern.

We use the word 'scarcity' to talk about resources that are not easy to find or get. People usually want more than is available. Notice the following:

  1. The scarcity of oil will become a major concern in the near future.
  2. Northern Mexico is very dry so water scarcity is a big problem.



Increased deforestation is seriously effecting wildlife.

Deforestation means the cutting down of trees and the destruction of forests by people. Here are two samples:

  1. Environmentalists fear that deforestation will contribute to global warming.
  2. Deforestation is destroying large areas of tropical rain forest.

indigenous people


A lot of indigenous people have been displaced.

'Indigenous people' are people who naturally exist in a place rather than arriving from another place. Notice the samples:

  1. Mistakenly believing he had reached the Indies' Columbus called the indigenous people of the Americas 'Indians'.
  2. Aborigines are Australia's indigenous people.

piping system


A big problem is with the piping system.

A piping system is how we bring water to cities, buildings and homes. Here are some samples:

  1. The rusty old piping system made bottled drinking water a necessity.
  2. Katia says the local government is fixing the leaky piping system in Mexico city.



People are becoming more environmentally conscious.

When we become more conscious of something we begin to notice and pay more attention. Note the sample sentences:

  1. People are becoming more and more conscious of global warming.
  2. Because of rising energy costs, I've become more conscious of leaving lights on in my home.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Below are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
scarcity • deforestation • indigenous
piping system • conscious
  1. The in this house is terrible.
  2. There is a of public toilets in this city.
  3. Many people live in that area of the country.
  4. This part of the country used to be so beautiful before became a problem.
  5. He is very of using too much water when he showers.