The poisoning of the world's land, air, and water is the fastest-spreading disease of civilization. It probably produces fewer headlines than wars, earthquakes and floods, but it is potentially one of history's greatest dangers to human life on earth. If present trends continue for the next several decades, our planet will become uninhabitable.
Overpopulation, pollution and energy consumption have created such planet-wide problems as massive deforestation, ozone depletion, acid rains and the global warming that is believed to be caused by the greenhouse effect.
The seas are in danger. They are filled with poison: industrial and nuclear waste, chemical fertilizers and pesticides. The Mediterranean is already nearly dead; the North Sea is following. The Aral Sea is on the brink of extinction. If nothing is done about it, one day nothing will be able to live in the seas.
Every ten minutes one kind of animal, plant or insect dies out for ever. If nothing is done about it, one million species that are alive today will have become extinct twenty years from now.
Air population is a very serious problem. In Cairo just breathing the air is life threatening- equivalent to smoking two packs of cigarettes/ a day. The same holds true for Mexico City and 600 cities of the former Soviet Union.
Industrial enterprises emit tons of harmful substances. These emissions have disastrous consequences for our planet. They are the main reason for the greenhouse effect and acid rains.
An even greater environmental threat are nuclear power stations. We all know how tragic the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster are.
People are beginning to realize that environmental problems are not somebody else's. They join and support various international organizations and green parties. If governments wake up to what is happening- perhaps we'll be able to avoid the disaster that threatens the natural world and all of us with it.
The United Kingdom of G.B. and Northern Irelands is situated on the British Isles/ The British Isles consists of two large islands, G.B. and Ireland, and about five thousand small islands. Their total area is over 244,000 square kilometers.
The UK is made up of four countries: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. GB consists of England, Scotland and Wales and doesn't include Northern Ireland. The capital of the UK is London.
The British Isles are separated from European continent by the North Sea and the English Channel. The western coast of GB is washed by the Atlantic Ocean and the Irish Sea.
The surface of the British Isles varies very much. The north of Scotland is mountainous and is called the Highlands, while the south, which has beautiful valleys and plains, is called the Lowlands.
There are a lot of rivers in GB, but they are not very long. The Severn is the longest river, while the Thames is the deepest and the most important one.
The mountains, the Atlantic Ocean and the warm waters if Gulf Stream influence the climate of the British Isles. The weather in GB is very changeable. A fine morning can change into a wet afternoon and evening and the wrong side out. The English people say: "Other countries have a climate; in England we have weather." The English also say that they have three variants of weather: when it rains in the morning, when it rains in the afternoon or t\when it rains all day long.
The weather is the favorite conversational topic in GB. After they greet each other they start talking the weather.
The best time of the year in GB is spring (of course, it rains in spring too). The two worst months in Britain are January and February. They are cold, damp and unpleasant. The best place in the world then is at home by the big fire. Summer months are rather cold and there can be a lot of rainy days. So most people who look forward to summer holidays, plan to go abroad for the summer.
The most unpleasant aspect of English weather is fog and smog. This is extremely bad in big cities especially in London. The fog spreads everywhere so cars move along slowly and people can't see each other. They try not to be run over by a car but still accidents are frequent in the fog.
I'd like to tell you about the Hermitage Gallery, one of the largest and well known museums in the world. Two months ago together with my classmates I was on an exertion in S. Petersburg. I visited many places of interest including the Hermitage Gallery. I was greatly impressed by visiting this museum of art. It was founded in 1764 by Catherine the Second when she bought 225 pictures in Berlin. Now the Hermitage consists of five buildings.
Now I'd like to tell you about pictures, sculptures and other works of art I've seen in the Hermitage Gallery. A great number of wonderful pictures are offered there. Everyone can find some kind of pictures to enjoy, for example the pictures by the world's greatest masters : Michelangelo, Raphael, Rembrandt, Rubens and many others. All great schools of paintings are represented there: Italian, Spanish, German etc.
A few words about sculptures. I saw a lot of vases, statues and fountains. The most beautiful thing I have ever seen was the fountain belonged to Alexander the Second.
Among other outstanding pieces of art I saw the coach of Catherine the Second and beautiful gobelens. It took 60 years to made one of these gobelens.
In conclusion, I'd like to stress that no one can see everything for the one visit. To enjoy the Hermitage Gallery you must visit it several times.
The State Hermitage in St Petersburg is one of the world's most outstanding art museums. It is the largest fine arts museum in Russia.
World famous is the collection of West-European paintings covering a span of about seven hundreds years, from the 13th to the 20th century, and comprising works by Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Titian, El Greco. Velasquez, Murillo; outstanding paintings by Rembrandt, Vandyke, Rubens; a remarkable group of French 18th-centure canvases, and Impressionist and Post Impressionist paintings. The collection illustrates the art of Italy, Spain, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, France, Britain, Sweden, Denmark, Finland and some other countries. The West-European Department also includes a fine collection of European sculpture, containing works by Michelangelo, Canova, Falconet, Houdon, Rodin and many other eminent masters. The Hermitage, together with the Pushkin Fine Arts Museum in Moscow, must be ranked among the richest in the world in respect of Impressionist art.
In addition to the works of Western masters, the Hermitage has sections devoted to the arts of India, China, Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Pre-Columbian America, Greece and Rome, as well as a department of prehistoric art, not to mention a section devoted to Scythian art. People come to admire the collections of tapestry, precious textiles, weapons, ivories, pottery, porcelain and furniture as well.
Millions of people all over the world are fond of sports and games. Sport helps people to stay in good shape, helps to support health and prevents from illness. Sport makes them more organized and better disciplined in their daily activities.
We've always paid great attention to sport in our schools, colleges and universities. You can hardly find a school without a gym or a sports ground. Every city and town has a few stadiums or swimming pools where local competitions are usually held.
There are different sporting societies and clubs in Russia. Many of them take part in different international tournaments and are known all over the world. A great nu,ber of world records have been set by Russian sportsmen. Our sportsmen also win a lot of gold, silver and bronze medals in the Olympic Games.
Moscow is the capital of Russia, its political, economic, commercial and cultural center. It was founded 8 centuries ago by Prince Yuri Dolgoruky in 1147. Gradually the city became more and more powerful. In the 13th century Moscow was the center of the struggle of Russian lands for the liberation from the tartar yoke. In the 16th century under Ivan the Terrible Moscow became the capital of the new united state. Though Peter the Great moved the capital to St. Petersburg in 1712; Moscow remained the heart of Russia. That's why it became the main target of Napoleon's attack. After the October revolution Moscow became the capital again.
Now Moscow is one of the largest cities in Europe. Its total area is about nine hundred square kilometers. The population of the city is over 8 million.
Moscow is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The heart of Moscow is Red Square. The Kremlin and St. Basil's Cathedral (Vasily Blazheny) are masterpieces of ancient Russian architecture. On the territory of the Kremlin you can see old cathedrals, the Palace of Congresses, the Tzar-Cannon and the Tzar-Bell, the biggest cannon and bell in the world. St. Basil's Cathedral was built in the mid-16th century in memory of the victory over Kazan.
One of the well-known Kremlin museums is the Armoury Chamber. The famous golden cap of Monomach, the first Russian imperial crown of Catherine the Second and many other historical items are exhibited there.
There are more than 80 museums in Moscow. The Historical Museum, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the Tretyakov State Picture Gallery are world famous and the largest.
Moscow is famous for its theatres. The best-known of them are Bolshoi, Maly and Art theatres.
Moscow is the seat of the Russian Parliament (the Duma) and the center of political life of the country.
First of all I'd like to tell you about my school which I've just left. My school is one of the specialized schools in Moscow. It is famous for its high-quality education and strict discipline. To my mind, our school-lyceum is very well equipped. It has a gym, a canteen, a library, a computer class and some labs( for example - chemistry lab or physics lab).
First two years in our lyceum we had 7 or 8 lessons, but in 10th and 11th forms we had less lessons. What about our homework we usually had a lot to do and it took me several hours. I sometimes had to sit up to write a composition, to prepare a report, to translate an article from English to Russian or to learn a poem by heart.
After classes we usually had some out-of-class activities. Our social and cultural life was well-organized. For example, we had a choir and literature club.
At school we had classes in Russian, literature, mathematics, English, history and so on. My favorite subjects were English, History and Russian. On Russian we had a lot of fun situations and talks; history, to my mind, is a very interesting subject; and what about English, we need learning this language to be able to read books, listen to the news, speak with English speaking people and so on.
Now my plans for the future. I must say that when you leave school you understand that the time to choose your future profession has come. It's not an easy task to make the right choice of a job. People choose profession according to their own interests and abilities. As far as i have a computer at home I've decided to enter some mathematic institute. It is called Moscow State Aviation-Technology University. I'll be study Informatics and English there. I think, today computer is very popular in our country and programmers are paid very much.