Cambridge B1 Preliminary

B1 Preliminary - Reading Multiple Choice Exercise 15

Read the text and then for each question, choose which of the four possible answers is best. Think also about why the other three answers are not possible.

Is Solar Energy The Magic Solution?

Energy is a big topic these days. We need energy for almost everything we do: driving cars, watching TV, charging our phones, heating our homes, lighting the streets and so on. But where does this energy come from? And how can we make sure it doesn't hurt our planet?

One type of energy is solar energy. This comes from the sun. Solar panels capture sunlight and turn it into energy we can use. It's a clean way to make energy and doesn't pollute the air. But is solar energy a magic solution? Let's compare it with other types of energy.

Wind energy also comes from nature. Wind turbines capture the wind and turn it into energy. Like solar energy, wind energy doesn't pollute the air. But wind turbines can be noisy and not everyone likes how they look. Many neighbourhoods or towns protest strongly about how wind turbines look when put on nearby hillsides or in the sea close to the beach.

Nuclear energy is another type. This comes from splitting atoms, tiny particles that make up everything around us. Nuclear energy is very powerful and doesn't produce air pollution. But it can be dangerous if something goes wrong and it produces waste that is hard to get rid of and lasts a long time.

Then there's hydro energy. This comes from water. Dams capture the energy of flowing water and turn it into energy we can use. Hydro energy doesn't pollute the air either. But building dams can harm the environment by changing the flow of rivers and affecting wildlife.

So, is solar energy the best choice? It's clean and safe. It doesn't pollute the air. It doesn't make noise. And it doesn't harm wildlife. But there's one big problem. Solar panels need sunlight. On cloudy days, they can't make much energy. They are quite reliant on the weather.

This means we can't rely on solar energy alone. We need a mix of different types of energy. This way, we can always have the energy we need without harming our planet.

So, solar energy might not be the magic solution. But it's definitely part of the answer.

1. Which of these in false about solar energy?

    It doesn't harm wildlife.

    It doesn't pollute the air.

    It doesn't turn sunlight into energy.

    It doesn't produce much energy on cloudy days.

2. What is a disadvantage of wind energy?

    It pollutes the air.

    Not everyone likes how wind turbines look.

    The turbines can be very dangerous.

    It cannot be used at night.

3. What is a risk of nuclear energy?

    It produces waste that's around for a long time.

    It doesn't produce enough power.

    It produces air pollution.

    It harms wildlife.

4. Why can't we rely on solar energy alone?

    Because it's very expensive.

    Because it produces air pollution.

    Because it harms wildlife.

    Because solar panels need sunlight.

5. What would an expert likely say about the future of energy production?

    Solar energy is the overall winner.

    We need to stop producing so much energy.

    We should go back to using coal which works in all situations.

    We need different solutions for different places.

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