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新四级听力听写练习第四单元Lesson18

时间:2006-09-10 16:00来源:互联网 提供网友:engineer007   字体: [ ]
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Welcome to the Bottom of the World

Antarctica is the highest, driest, and coldest place on Earth. It is also the remotest, a fact which accounts for its unspoiled environment. It is difficult for people to get there, and not a comfortable place for people to stay once they arrive. It is widely described as the last true wilderness1 on our planet.

The Antarctic continent has mountain ranges similar in size to the European Alps. But whereas the Alps' snowcaps are just deep enough for skiing, Antarctic mountains are swallowed up by their caps, and lie buried beneath an ice sheet that is five kilometers thick.

The cold climate is responsible for maintaining the continent's year-round ice fields: They never melt. Even though Antarctica receives more sunlight than the equator, the temperatures are lower because the ice sheet reflects the heat back into space. Thus, the coldest temperature ever recorded on Earth was in Antarctica in July, 1983: Soviet2 scientists shivered through temperatures that fell to minus 89.2 degrees Celsius3.

For centuries, Europeans wondered about the existence of a South-Polar continent, but no one actually knew for certain Antarctica was there until 1820 when European explorers "discovered" it. Since then, men have gone to Antarctica in search of adventure. Testing their abilities, several teams of explorers set out in 1911 to be the first men to stand at the South Pole. Norwegian Roald Amundsen and his men reached the pole; so did Robert F. Scott, an Englishman, but he and his team died on the return trip.

Once completely inaccessible4, Antarctica has more recently been playing host to adventurers seeking excitement, scientists interested in experimenting, and companies looking to exploit this wild terrain5 for profit: gold, uranium, and oil are just some of the valuable resources which lie beneath the continent's icy covering.

Though no human population is native to Antarctica, about 1,000 people work there in the summer months, and another 12,000 tourists visit every year. They come to enjoy the unspoiled environment, the bright blue skies, and the fresh white snow fields.

If a tourist is lucky enough, he or she can join an expedition to see some of the continent's other residents. Animals along the coast of the Southern Ocean don't mind the cold weather, and thrive in Antarctica's seas. Penguins6 and seals breed on the icy shores and fish for krill in the cool water.

Yet, Antarctica's fragile and complicated eco-system is threatened by its human visitors. Damage to the environment occurs as people come looking for resources beneath the ice, or carelessly leave their garbage behind. Currently, countries are working to ensure that the damage to Antarctica's environment is minimized, and that the last wilderness on Earth will remain an unspoiled place.


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1 wilderness SgrwS     
n.杳无人烟的一片陆地、水等,荒漠
参考例句:
  • She drove the herd of cattle through the wilderness.她赶着牛群穿过荒野。
  • Education in the wilderness is not a matter of monetary means.荒凉地区的教育不是钱财问题。
2 Soviet Sw9wR     
adj.苏联的,苏维埃的;n.苏维埃
参考例句:
  • Zhukov was a marshal of the former Soviet Union.朱可夫是前苏联的一位元帅。
  • Germany began to attack the Soviet Union in 1941.德国在1941年开始进攻苏联。
3 Celsius AXRzl     
adj.摄氏温度计的,摄氏的
参考例句:
  • The temperature tonight will fall to seven degrees Celsius.今晚气温将下降到七摄氏度。
  • The maximum temperature in July may be 36 degrees Celsius.七月份最高温度可能达到36摄氏度。
4 inaccessible 49Nx8     
adj.达不到的,难接近的
参考例句:
  • This novel seems to me among the most inaccessible.这本书对我来说是最难懂的小说之一。
  • The top of Mount Everest is the most inaccessible place in the world.珠穆朗玛峰是世界上最难到达的地方。
5 terrain sgeyk     
n.地面,地形,地图
参考例句:
  • He had made a detailed study of the terrain.他对地形作了缜密的研究。
  • He knows the terrain of this locality like the back of his hand.他对这一带的地形了如指掌。
6 penguins fc5bf5a50fd6b440a35d113f324c5e75     
n.企鹅( penguin的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • Why can penguins live in cold environment? 为什么企鹅能生活在寒冷的环境中? 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Whales, seals, penguins, and turtles have flippers. 鲸、海豹,企鹅和海龟均有鳍形肢。 来自《现代英汉综合大词典》
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