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“Saving the Environment”



Pre-Listening Question

What are some of the greatest environmental concerns in your hometown, and what is being done by local governments, businesses, and individuals to address them?

Vocabulary and Expressions

Here are some words and expressions that appear in the video:

hybrid vehicle (noun): vehicle using two different types of power, for example, gas, diesel, or electricity
– I want to buy a hybrid vehicle to save money.

in the long run (expression): a longer period in the future
– I think you will save money in the long run by riding your bicycle to school.

until the wheels fall off (expression): go until something fails
– I’m going to drive this car until the wheels fall off.

Listening Comprehension Questions

Now, watch the interview and answer the comprehension questions. You can also turn on the automatically-generated captions for the video once you start it.


Randall: In this video, Aubrey, let’s talk about different ways in which we can protect the environment, uh, from in our homes to our communities and so forth. And actually I want to go back and play a recording that we did. Let’s listen to this. And it’s on my website and it’s called Saving Water. And then we’ll talk about how this is related to the topic today.


Randall: Today I’m interviewing nine year old Alex about her feelings and how people can help save the environment. So, Alex, how can we save the environment.

Young Aubrey (Alex): By saving water.

Randall: Well, how can we do that?

Young Aubrey (Alex): By not using too much water when we wash dishes, take a bath, and when we do other things like watering the plants outside.


Randall: Okay, So let’s talk about that again in this particular recording on my website called Saving Water, uh, you use we use the name of Alex in this particular case. But for you, it talks about saving water. And when you think about protecting the environment, whether it’s that or other, what can we do on a daily basis?

Aubrey: Well, interestingly enough, um, if you’re not washing, you know, 1 or 2 dishes, you’re doing more than that. It’s actually more environmentally friendly. Like you use less water if you use the dishwasher. So use the dishwasher.

Randall: And I don’t think people think about that. That’s a great point.

Aubrey: Yeah, it’s a great excuse not to hand wash dishes and not to brag, but I drive a Prius, so saving the environment there. Okay.

Randall: And in what way does a Prius save the environment?

Aubrey: It just has really low gas or high gas mileage. Um, you know, it because it is a hybrid vehicle. Uh, that’s not necessarily why I bought it. It’s a really nice car. Um,

Randall: And in the long run, it’ll probably benefit you and the environment.

Aubrey: Exactly. And you know, that type of car tends to last a long time, so I intend on driving it ’til the wheels fall off.

Randall: Okay. Well, thank you both, your voice from 20 years ago and now in saving the water, protecting the environment in different ways. So thank you for sharing.

Conversation Questions

Describe these methods of saving the environment and discuss to what extent you do each of these:

  • recycling paper, plastic, glass, and even food scrapes 
  • conserving water at home
  • driving the speed limit to save on gas
  • carpooling with coworkers or friends to work and/or school
  • using reusable water bottles instead of disposable plastic ones

Related Language Activities on Randall’s Web Site

The following activities deal with related topics to give you additional language practice.

Try More Free Listening at