Here some examples of follow up questions that you may asked during your speaking part 3 by examiner related to cue card “Describe a place you visited where the air was polluted”.
IELTS Speaking Part 3 : Topic Pollution
1. Is there more pollution now than in the past?
The way I see it, yes, the environment here is definitely way more polluted than it ever was. My mom always tells me that she never had a single idea about the existence of a term called “pollution” back when she was a kid 50 years ago. Now, we have pretty much everything: air, water, soil, noise pollution. I believe the reason behind this is the booming economy that we’ve been enjoying for the past three decades. Can’t deny it brought the prosperity that everyone has yearned for. But, anything has its price, of course. We’ve turned a blind eye to any environmental issues that may arise to make way for economic development. Now it’s about time we need to seriously reconsider this strategy.
2. In what ways can air pollution be reduced effectively?
To my mind, there are a few things we could do, at least here in Vietnam. First of all, the main culprit behind air pollution is the thermal power plants. We have hundreds of them across Vietnam, burning tons of coal each day and releasing harmful gasses into the atmosphere. Shutting them down is the first thing I would think about. Secondly, banning diesel or petrol-powered vehicles would also help in terms of cutting down exhaust fumes.
3. Do you think the city is cleaner or dirtier than the countryside? Why?
Interesting. Many people would be caught by surprise upon hearing this, yet the city, as a matter of fact, should be the cleaner one. Anyone would think that as there is way less littering, the countryside should be a better place to live in terms of cleanliness. However, it is the de facto best illegal dumping site here in Vietnam due to the lack of surveillance and strong deterrence from the authorities. All kinds of trash, rubbish, construction waste are dumped there. Literally all over the place, left, right and center.
4. What can factories and power plants do to reduce pollutants?
I don’t have a very bright idea about this. All I could think of is to somehow upgrade the technology. That’s all I can say. Perhaps more attention could be paid to what Norway and Sweden are doing. I heard somewhere they are currently the world-leading powerhouses in terms of environmentally friendly technology.
5. Do you think many companies have been forced to reduce pollutants?
Again, I don’t know much about this. However, I do know that the Chinese have a brilliant idea on how to subtly impose this kind of policy. They’ve created a whole market called “industrial pollutants allowance trading platform”. It’s where businesses can trade their “limitations” on harmful pollutants with each other. This means whoever is willing to invest in greener technologies could generate more funds simply by selling their so-called “allowance” to other partners who are not yet willing to go green.
6. Do you think the wind has any effect on pollution? How?
I believe the wind plays a big part in moving or scattering pollutants in the air. Smog just simply doesn’t disappear miraculously. They’ve quietly built up over the years and now have reached the point where everybody living in my city can see it with their own eyes every time it’s not windy. Had it not because of the wind pushing the smog faraway to the countryside, people would have realized how bad the situation was long ago.