Australia’s 『catastrophic’ fires continue 澳大利亞 「災難級」 林火仍在燃燒

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(註:原文發表於 2019 年 11 月 20 日)
高溫和大風正在擴大澳大利亞林火危機所威脅到的地區,澳大利亞的三個州已發出警告,預計將迎來今年林火季最糟糕的狀況。

Summer is still officially two weeks away, yet Australia has rarely – if ever – seen fires of such intensity. A 『code red』 warning has been issued in the state of Victoria for the first time in almost a decade.

距離夏季正式到來還有兩週時間,然而澳大利亞幾乎從未遇到強度如此猛烈的火災。維多利亞州近十年來首次發佈 「紅色預警」。

In neighbouring South Australia, communities on the Yorke Peninsula, west of Adelaide, have witnessed voracious walls of flame. In New South Wales, six people have died in the fires in recent weeks and more than 600 homes have been destroyed.

在鄰近的南澳大利亞州,阿德萊德以西的約克半島上,當地社區燒起了彌天大火。在新南威爾士州,最近幾週已有六人死於火災,600 多座房屋被燒燬。

Sydney has again been choked by a toxic smoky haze from nearby blazes. As the flames rage so does the debate about the impact of climate change.

悉尼再次被附近大火帶來的有毒煙霧所籠罩。隨著大火的肆虐,人們就氣候變化所造成的影響也展開了激烈的辯論。

The government here insists there is no direct evidence linking warmer, drier conditions to this Australian crisis. However, scientists and the nation’s official weather bureau say the proof is there for all to see.

澳大利亞政府堅稱,沒有直接證據表明氣候變暖、乾燥的天氣條件與這次澳洲林火危機有關。但科學家與澳大利亞的國家官方氣象局表示,證據是顯而易見的。

詞彙

intensity 強度,猛烈程度
code red 紅色預警
voracious (火勢)兇猛的
choked 被濃煙籠罩的,被煙霧充斥的
toxic 有毒的
rage (火勢或爭論)肆虐
climate change 氣候變化
proof 證據

閱讀理解:請在讀完上文後,回答下列問題。

1. How often has Australia seen such intense fires?

2. What is 『choking’ Sydney and making it difficult for people there to breathe?

3. True or false? There are strong feelings and anger in the discussions about the impact of climate change.

4. Why does the Australian government think that the fires are not caused by climate change?

答案

1. How often has Australia seen such intense fires?
Hardly ever (rarely), or possibly never (if ever).

2. What is 『choking’ Sydney and making it difficult for people there to breathe?
Sydney has again been choked by a toxic smoky haze from nearby blazes.

3. True or false? There are strong feelings and anger in the discussions about the impact of climate change.
True. As the flames rage so does the debate about the impact of climate change. (Rage can describe a strong feeling of anger.)

4. Why does the Australian government think that the fires are not caused by climate change?
The government insists there is no direct evidence linking warmer, drier conditions to this Australian crisis.