Fluency News #49

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Hello, everyone!

Sejam bem-vindos e bem-vindas a mais um episódio da nossa série de podcasts, o Fluency News! Aqui, você vai poder treinar a sua escuta e ficar por dentro do que está acontecendo no mundo, sempre com as três principais notícias da semana, tudo em inglês! Ao longo do episódio, nós também adicionamos explicações em português das coisas que achamos que precisam de mais atenção, assim você não perde nenhum detalhe! 

No episódio desta semana, falamos sobre o Talibã tomando o poder no Afeganistão, sobre o resultado de um terremoto de grande magnitude no Haiti e sobre os efeitos do desflorestamento brasileiro na floresta Amazônica. Também falamos sobre seres humanos sendo incríveis!

Temos uma página de dicas de inglês no Instagram, vá conferir! @fluencytvingles

Toda semana, temos um novo episódio do Fluency News, não deixe de escutar! See you!

Este episódio foi escrito por Lívia Pond.

Transcrição do episódio

What’s up, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Fluency News! I’m Scott Lowe, and it’s awesome you’re here with me today, to get informed and put your English to the test! 

This podcast series is a great way for you to expose yourself to English, work on your comprehension skills and train your listening skills! To see the transcript of this episode, head over to fluencytv.com. There you’ll also find the sources to our stories, more podcasts, e-books, livestreams, videos and tips, and it’s all free, so don’t miss out.

Now let’s just jump into this week’s stories.

Tensions continue to rise in Afghanistan, after U.S. President Joe Biden ordered the armed forces to leave the Asian country. As feared by many, the Taliban has taken control, including of the capital, and thousands of people, Afghans and foreigners alike, have been crowding Kabul’s airport for days, hoping to catch a flight. 

At least twenty people have been killed in the chaos at the airport, most in shootings and stampedes in the heat and dust, as U.S. and international forces try to evacuate their citizens and vulnerable Afghans.

The Taliban has warned the U.S. and Britain to get out of the country by August 31st, or “there will be consequences”. Biden had declared previously that the deadline for the troops to withdraw would be the end of the month, but admitted on Sunday that an extension was under discussion. 

Taliban spokesman Dr Suhail Shaheen said the group will not accept an extension to the deadline and warned of retaliation if Western forces extend their 'occupation' since the group dramatically swept to power. 

He told Sky News: 'It's a red line. President Biden announced that on August 31st they would withdraw all their military forces. So if they extend it, that means they are extending occupation while there is no need for that.

'If the US or UK were to seek additional time to continue evacuations - the answer is no. Or there would be consequences. 

'It will create mistrust between us. If they are intent on continuing the occupation, it will provoke a reaction.'

Taliban has already taken some measures to undo any progress that was made while they were not in power. 

Days after vowing to respect women's rights in Afghanistan, officials in the Herat province have banned co-education in government and private universities, describing it as the 'root of all evils in society'.

During a meeting of university professors and owners of private educational institutions, Taliban representative and Head of Higher Education, Mullah Farid said there is no alternative and co-education must end.

He also said virtuous female lecturers would be allowed to teach only female students, but not the male ones.

The group also reportedly banned women anchors from working in television. The New York Times reported that the Taliban has “indefinitely suspended” women employees from state television. The Times attributed the news to Khadija Amin, a “prominent anchorwoman”, who reportedly spoke about it during an interaction.

Amin said, “I am a journalist, and I am not allowed to work. What will I do next? The next generation will have nothing, everything we have achieved for 20 years will be gone. The Taliban is the Taliban. They have not changed.”

<hlt>A palavra “will” é um verbo semi-modal, comumente utilizada para falar do futuro. Em outros episódios do Fluency News, nós já falamos desse uso da palavra, mas deixa eu te lembrar. Nós empregamos esse verbo quando temos uma certeza maior de que algo vai acontecer, ou quando tomamos decisões espontâneas, na hora da fala. 

A palavra will também pode ser usada como sinônimo de “can”, em perguntas. Nesse caso, não indica futuro, mas tem o significado de “poder”. Por exemplo, eu posso dizer “Can you open that window?” ou “Will you open that window”? e o significado seria o mesmo, “você pode abrir aquela janela”. <hlt>

After a major earthquake that struck Haiti last week, authorities reported that the death toll has risen to 2,207, with 344 people still missing. Haiti’s Civil Protection Agency said via Twitter that over 12K people were injured and nearly 53K houses were destroyed. 

While the country requires urgent humanitarian help, efforts to deliver food, water and medical supplies to victims have been complicated not just by road and bridge damage.

Distribution points have been the target of attacks, as gangs have hijacked aid trucks and desperate crowds have scuffled over bags of food. 

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said that following negotiations, the gangs had agreed to let aid through.

But a major Port-au-Prince hospital closed for two days after two doctors were kidnapped by criminals. A pregnant mother and her baby died while waiting for one of the captured doctors, who was meant to be on his way to perform an emergency Cesarean delivery.

Rescue crews are still digging through rubble in a search for survivors, but as the stench of death fills the air, hopes are dwindling.

"We are preparing for a public health disaster," says Nadesha Mijoba of the Haitian Health Foundation.

"The sanitation situation is quite critical... it is our hope that we don't have an outbreak of cholera," Ms Mijoba also warned BBC News.

<hlt>Talvez você já tenha visto online números seguidos por um K. Você sabe o que isso significa? O K é usado para representar “mil”. Na nossa história, por exemplo, temos 12K e 53K, doze mil e cinquenta e três mil, respectivamente. Essa “abreviação” não é formal, mas é muitas vezes usada em manchetes de notícias, onde o espaço para palavras é limitado. Usamos o K e não o T de thousand, por exemplo, porque essa é uma abreviação da palavra grega kilo, que significa mil. Só colocamos o K após o número se for um número redondo, como doze mil ou 53 mil. No caso de 2207, que também falamos na história, escrevendo o número inteiro. <hlt>

Now in news a little closer to home to Brazilians, the Brazilian Amazon deforestation hit its highest level in a decade, despite increasing global concern over the accelerating devastation since President Jair Bolsonaro took office in 2019.

Between August 2020 and July 2021, the rainforest lost 10,476 square kilometers – an area nearly seven times bigger than greater London and 13 times the size of New York City. 

The data was released by Imazon, a Brazilian research institute that has been tracking the Amazon deforestation since 2008. 

"In July alone, 2,095 square kilometers were deforested, 80% more than in the same month in 2020," said Imazon. "This area is larger than the city of São Paulo."

“Deforestation is still out of control,” Carlos Souza, a researcher at Imazon said. “Brazil is going against the global climate agenda that is seeking to urgently reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

Researchers are warning that the accelerated destruction of the forest is imperiling the ability to keep planetary heating below the Paris climate agreement's 1.5ºC target.

Souza called for the urgent resumption of government actions to stop the destruction, including the enforcement of illegal agriculture-led deforestation in the region, which has been impaired by budget cuts for the environment ministry and environmental protection agencies.

Even as he faces accusations of systematically dismantling environmental protections, Bolsonaro has deployed thousands of soldiers to combat illegal deforestation and fires.

But the policy has proved ineffective, said Marcio Astrini, the executive-secretary of the organization Climate Observatory.

“The data shows that it didn’t work,” said Astrini. “No army operation will be able to mask or reverse the attacks of the federal government against the forest.”

Astrini said that the deforestation rates in 2021 are expected to be almost 50% higher than in 2018, before Bolsonaro took office.

<hlt>É possível que a palavra imperiling seja nova para você. Ela não é muito usada no dia a dia. Normalmente quando queremos falar desse mesmo significado, usamos endanger, risk, jeopardize. Imperiling significa “ameaçando”, “pondo em perigo”. Então quando eu digo “The destruction of the forest is imperiling the ability to keep planetary heating below the 1.5ºC target”, eu estou dizendo que “a destruição da floresta está ameação a habilidade de manter o aquecimento do planeta abaixo do objetivo de 1,5ºC”.<hlt>

Now let’s end this week’s episode with some good news, shall we? This story is one of the great examples to show that there are good, no, great people out there, willing to help each other. 

Tiffany Holloway’s son Jonas is obsessed with everything ocean-related, so she said she wasn’t surprised when he asked for a plush Manta Ray for his 5th birthday.

The problem arose when she checked her savings account balance and saw she only had $2. With a couple of weeks left until Jonas’ birthday, she decided to get creative. She found some need and thread and turned a fuzzy blue baby blanket into a manta ray plushy. 

“I sat on the couch until 1 in the morning, poking myself with that needle until I’d finally finished sewing it together,” said Holloway, 33. “I took two buttons off one of my blouses and used those for eyes.”

She felt so proud of her thrifty creation that she took to social media post a photo on Reddit’s poverty/finance page, which she follows for money-saving tips.

“My son wanted a stuffed manta ray for his 5th birthday, but I didn’t have money to buy one, so instead I converted his old baby blanket into one!” she wrote.

She was floored, she said, when she logged in the next day and saw that she’d been flooded with positive comments and offers of help. More than 66,000 people had liked the photo of the homemade manta ray she’d named Roger. 

Dozens of people asked if they could mail her son additional stuffed manta rays for his birthday, said Holloway. Within days, dozens of packages started to arrive at her home.

“We’re up to 150 of them,” she said, noting that she surprised Jonas with new manta rays every day leading up to his birthday.

On his big day, she gave him a birthday cake made of pancakes — and the manta ray she’d sewed. It was his favorite of them all.

“I’ve never seen him so happy — I can’t thank people enough for making him feel special,” said Holloway, who’s a single mom to three other sons, ages 16, 8 and 2.

“I’ve been having a tough time financially and was feeling like a failure as a parent until this happened,” she said.

The help wasn’t limited to manta ray plushies though.

“One man paid for us to go to the aquarium in Oklahoma City about 20 minutes away, and another person bought us tickets to the zoo,” she said. “In both places, Jonas was able to see manta rays for the first time and pet them.”

Jennifer Prokop saw Holloway’s post and paid for the zoo tickets. She also started a GoFundMe account to help Holloway get caught up on bills and pay for car repairs. Prokop, 38, said that when she saw Holloway’s post, she felt a connection to her.

“I have a daughter who has grown up loving zoos, aquariums and museums,” she said. “I thought if they wanted to see [a manta ray] in person, it would be a great way to bring the family some joy, just like their story did for me.”

“Besides,” Prokop added, “I wanted to do something to make a little kid smile on his birthday.”

Holloway said she’s grateful for the kindness of strangers, and for the unexpected turn of events.

“It’s not about presents and money,” she said. “It’s about love and humanity.”

“The people who saw my post are a lot like me — they’re not well-off,” added Holloway. “But they came forward to lift us up and make a dream true. We’ll carry that happy feeling with us.”

<hlt>Você já ouviu falar de “well-off”? Esse adjetivo significa “rico”, “abastado”. Poderíamos traduzir para “bem de vida”, aquela pessoa que não tem que se preocupar com dinheiro. Você poderia dizer que Jeff Bezos, por exemplo, o dono da Amazon, is well-off.<hlt>

And that was the last story of the day! Feels good to hear about people being good, right?

Sempre recebemos muitas mensagens de pessoas querendo estudar na Fluency Academy. Se você é uma delas e quer melhorar o seu nível de inglês, espanhol, francês, italiano, alemão ou japonês estudando com os nossos super professores, você pode se inscrever na nossa lista de espera.

Assim, na próxima vez que abrirmos uma turma, você estará na lista prioritária, o que vai te dar uma chance ainda melhor de conseguir uma vaga! É só clicar no link na descrição desse episódio e se inscrever, leva uns 15 segundinhos e é 100% de graça!

Se você conhece um amigo ou amiga que sonha em estudar com a gente, manda o link pra eles também! Spread the word people!

And that’s where we’re going to end today’s episode. We hope you’re having a fantastic day and week, and we’ll see you next time. Peace out.


Afghanistan under the Taliban






The Death Toll From Haiti's Earthquake Rises Above 2,200 People



Brazilian Amazon Deforestation Hits Highest Level in a Decade



Struggling mother posts handmade gift online, people come to aid

Scott Lowe
Hey guys! Eu sou o Scott, seu professor nativo de inglês da Fluency Academy!
Nome do autor
Hey guys! Eu sou a Becca, teacher de inglês na Fluency Academy!
Nome do autor
Hey guys! Eu sou a Becca, teacher de inglês na Fluency Academy!
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