COP 27 Lesson 3 “KEEPING 1.5 ALIVE” (Intermediate/Advanced English lesson)

Essas aulas de inglês são para alunos intermediários e avançados de inglês como segunda língua. Eles incluem “Ler”, “Ouvir” e “Escrever”. Basta seguir a lição respondendo às perguntas à medida que as encontra.

Todas as vagas em negrito devem ser traduzidas para seu próprio idioma para ajudar na compreensão do novo vocabulário.

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If world leaders can’t agree on the 1.5c limit of global warming at COP27 what chance do we have of agreeing to work together to save the planet?



During these last two weeks at the COP27 climate change conference in Egypt world leaders were struggling to agree whether or not to keep the 1.5 degee C limit agreed  in Paris a few years ago alive. Instead, some leaders were asking to increase the limit to 2 degees C because at the moment the increase since pre-industrial times the increase  already stands at 1.1 degees C and the 1.5 limit is expected to be broken in the next two years as temperature continue to rise. What effect will this have for you and me?

At 1.5 degrees warming, the sea level is expected to rise by 10 to 30 inches (26 to 77 centimeters), putting 10 million more people at risk from coastal storms and flooding. Heat waves will continue to get worse, exposing 14 percent of the world population to extreme heat at least once every five years. So, where are we today (November 2022)?

At the moment the global temperature average rise is at 1.1 degrees C and according to the UN (United Nations) we will reach 1.5c in less than five years time.

But what does this mean for us?

What happens if the world warms beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius?


The planet’s average temperature is now 1.2 degrees Celsius warmer than it was before the industrial revolution in the late 1800s, according to the World Meteorological Organization. We are already seeing more intense heat waves, storms and other consequences. The goal of the international Paris climate accord is to prevent much worse, by limiting global warming to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius and ideally to 1.5 degrees Celsius.


In 2018, climate scientists convened by the United Nations published a report warning us of what is likely to happen beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming. At 1.5 degrees warming, sea level is expected to rise by 10 to 30 inches (26 to 77 centimeters), putting 10 million more people at risk from coastal storms and flooding. Heat waves will continue to get worse, exposing 14 percent of the world population to extreme heat at least once every five years. Ecosystems will suffer, too. After 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, up to 90 percent of all coral reefs could die out, and about 7 percent of Earth’s land area could shift into a new biome, with grasslands turning to desert, tundra turning to forest, etc.


At 2 degrees Celsius, some of these climate impacts will become twice as bad as they would be at 1.5 degrees. But these numbers shouldn’t be viewed as sudden cliffs. “Every half-degree matters,” Penn State University climate scientist Michael Mann told Inside Climate News in 2018. “A better analogy is a minefield. The further out on to that minefield we go, the more explosions we are likely to set off.”


After early heat waves across the northern hemisphere in the summer of 2021, some scientists think we are already setting off more explosions than expected. They warn that even 1.5 degrees Celsius may not be as safe, relatively speaking, as previously thought, and urge communities to start preparing and adapting.


Listening Exercise

Watch the following video and answer the questions below about the differences between a 1.5c and 2c increase in global warming.


  1. When was the Paris agreement signed?
  2. What does the verb ‘to be murky’ mean?
  3. Name two consequences of what happens between a difference of 1.5c and a 2c rise in global temperature.
  4. What is a’a lofty goal’

Climate Crisis: What’s the Difference Between a Rise of 1.5, 2, and 3 Degrees Celsius?



Political leaders continue to back the fossil fuel industry even as forests burn, the ocean heats up, permafrost melts, and animals the world over lose their habitats.

It’s easy to become pessimistic, and wonder why the decades ahead would be any different than the dismal track record of the past.

But that outlook unnecessarily accepts the exponential risk of the climate crisis, making it seem like we’re doomed no matter what.


Up to a certain point of warming, humans can adapt to a new normal of limited resources, economic “degrowth,” and environmental rehabilitation. But if greenhouse gas emissions heat the planet further, then the ecological and climate systems that humans have relied on for millennia will unravel, the planet will become hostile, and global inequality would deteriorate to something out of Octavia Butler’s dystopian sci-fi.

I personally have no interest in religion and I am a confirmed atheist. However, I have read the bible many times simply as a book of interest and of literature. In these last three lesson I do recognise a number of prophecies. First in the book of relelation which quite clearly describes the end of the world as we know it and secondly in Matthew 13: 1 – 23 (The Parable Of The Sower) which describes a situation where people are clearly being warned and things to come explained to them but people don’t listen.  For me as an atheist but someone who has read and studied the bible these two scripts seem too close to the scientific predictions of climate change.  Below you will find a book review of the Parable of the sower. ‘Make of it what you will’. After reading these three lessons make your own mind up, believer or disbeliever. 


Parable of the Sower is a 1993 science fiction novel by American writer Octavia E. Butler. It is a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel that provides commentary on climate change and social inequality. The novel follows Lauren Olamina, a young woman who can feel the pain of others and becomes displaced from her home.

DOWNLOAD the ebook HERE on Amazon

SUMMARY of the book

Watch the video and answer the four questions below about the book ‘Parable of the Sower’.


  1. What is this story about?
  2. Is the book written in the past, present or future?
  3. What is ‘systemic oppression?
  4. What do the following three expressions mean?  1). Perpetual war. 2). Environmental distruction. 3). Alienation.


That’s why it’s so important to pressure world leaders to keep temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, as stipulated in the Paris climate agreement.

This is the scenario that the world’s leading scientists, under the auspices of the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, say we have to stay within to remain safe, but even 1.5 degrees entails harsh, new realities.


Over the last few weeks we have been studying a lot of information about climate change during the COP27 conference. In the past, I thought I know what the issues were and I also thought that the human race was acting to solve the problems and that everything will be fine in the end. However, after these three weeks of studying together with my students I have realised two things:

  1. This first is that I actually know nothing and it’s shocking when you do look closely at the facts and figures.
  2. The people I have spoken to over the last few weeks also knew nothing prior to our lessons.

But there was something else even more disturbing. Overall, the people I spoke to either had little interest in the subject or were complete disbelievers.  Both of these two things spell real problems ahead. Whatever their reasons, preventining catastrophy seems to me an impossibility.


In 150 words give your honest opinion about what you think.  There are four issues to write about.

  1. Do you believe the climate science?
  2. What should we be doing right now as individuals?
  3.  Is it the governments responsibility to act or ours?
  4. And,  in truth what do you think the end result will be? Either way.

In your writing I would like you to use examples of the following grammar concepts:

  1. One example of each of the three perfect progressive tenses.
  2. Present perfect progressive
  3. Past perfect progressive
  4. Future perfect progressive.

There are three videos below to help you remember the differences.


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