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首页  »  考研英语时事阅读  »  【经济学人】大坝风波丨2017.08.03丨总第980期

摘要: 导读 埃及一直以金字塔和富庶的尼罗河闻名于世。现在,因气候变化引发的恶果已经让这个视尼罗河为生命线的国家感受

导读

 埃及一直以金字塔和富庶的尼罗河闻名于世。现在,因气候变化引发的恶果已经让这个视尼罗河为生命线的国家感受到巨大的威胁。海平面上升让这个占埃及农业产值三分之一的富庶地带面临被淹没的危险。

Dam bluster

大坝风波

How climate change might affect the Nile

气候变化会对尼罗河造成怎样的影响

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan will have to learn to share water, or their people will suffer

埃及、埃塞俄比亚和苏丹将不得不学会共享水,否则这几个国家的人将遭殃。

Aug 3rd 2017 | CAIRO


TO THE untrained eye, the satellite photos of north-west Ethiopia on July 10th may have seemed benign. They showed a relatively small pool of water next to an enormous building site on the Blue Nile, the main tributary of the Nile river. But the project under construction is the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which is more than halfway complete. And the water is why it is so controversial.

对于普通人来说,从7月10日拍摄的阿塞俄比亚西北部的照片上看一切还是正常的。这些照片显示的是靠近尼罗河主要的支流,青尼罗河上正在修筑的巨大建筑的附近,有着一片相对较小的水域。但是这项正在修筑的工程是大埃塞俄比亚文艺复兴大坝,项目进度已过半。这片水域正是这大坝位置饱受争议的原因。

  • benign:adj.温和的,仁慈的

  • enormous :adj.巨大的

  • tributary:n.支流

  • controversial:adj.有争议的,引起争议的,被争论的


Since Ethiopia announced its plan to build the dam, it has inspired threats of sabotage from Egypt, which sits downstream and relies on the Nile for electricity, farming and drinking water. Egypt claims that it is entitled to a certain proportion of the Nile’s water based on colonial-era treaties. Ethiopia dismisses those agreements. The pool of water in the photos suggested that it was beginning to fill the reservoir behind the dam, reducing the river’s flow.

自从埃塞俄比亚宣布修建大坝的计划以来,它就激发了来自下游地区埃及的破坏威胁,因为埃及的电力、农业和饮用水都依赖于尼罗河。埃及声称根据殖民时期的条约,它有权获得尼罗河的一定的水资源。埃塞俄比亚驳回了这些协议。照片中的水池表明水坝后面的水库将被填满,从而减少了河水的流量。

  • sabotage:n,蓄意破坏

  • entitled:adj.题名为,书名叫做…,有资格的

  • proportion:n.比,比率

  • colonial-era:n.殖民时代

  • treaties:n.条约( treaty的名词复数)

  • reservoir:n.蓄水池

That turns out not to have been the case. The pool was deemed by Egypt to be a result of construction and seasonal Nile flooding. But the alarms it raised are indicative of how sensitive negotiations between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan have become. Talks over such things as how fast to fill the reservoir and how to operate the dam have stumbled. And a potentially huge complication looms over any discussion of the Nile’s future: climate change.

事实证明并非如此。埃及认为的大坝其实是由于建筑物和尼罗河季节性洪水造成的。但它造成的紧张局势提醒着人们,埃及、埃塞俄比亚和苏丹之间的谈判变得多么敏感。关于水库要填满的速度和如何操作大坝等问题的讨论都以失败而告终。在关于尼罗河未来的讨论中,潜在的巨大问题是:气候变化。

  • deem:v.认为,相信

  • indicative:adj.象征的

  • negotiation:n.协商

  • stumble:v.(不顺畅地)说

  • complication:n.[医]并发症

  • loom:vi.隐约地出现;赫然耸现;迫在眉睫


By 2050 around a billion people will live in the countries through which the Nile and its tributaries flow. That alone will put enormous stress on the water supply. But according to a study by Mohamed Siam and Elfatih Eltahir of MIT, potential changes to the river’s flow, resulting from climate change, may add to the strain. Messrs Siam and Eltahir conclude that on current trends the annual flow could increase, on average, by up to 15%. That may seem like a good thing, but it could also grow more variable, by 50%. In other words, there would be more (and worse) floods and droughts.

到2050年底,约有十亿人将生活在尼罗河及其支流流过的国家。仅这一点就将给供水带来巨大压力。但是,根据麻省理工学院的Mohamed Siam和elfatih Eltahir对气候变化造成的河流的流量变化的研究,情况可能会更加严峻。Messrs Siam和Eltahir认为,按照当前的趋势,尼罗河及其支流每年的流量可能会增加,平均达15%。这似乎是一件好事,但有50%的可能性,它也可能会带来更多的变数。换句话说,会有更多的(更严重的)的洪水和干旱。


There is, of course, uncertainty in the projections, not least because differing global climate models give different numbers. But the idea that the flow of the Nile is likely to become more variable is lent credibility, the authors argue, by the fact that trends over decades seem to agree with them, and by consideration of the effects of El Ni?os. These colossal climatic oscillations, driven by changes in the temperature of the Pacific, are correlated with the Nile’s flow, and climate-change studies suggesting more extreme El Ni?os in years to come thus bolster the idea of a more variable Nile.

当然,预测中存在着不确定性,尤其是因为不同的全球气候模型给出了不同的数据。但是,尼罗河的流量可能会变得更为多变的说法是具有可信度的,作者认为,事实上,考虑到El Ni?OS的影响,在过去几十年显示的趋势印证了他们的观点。在太平洋的温度变化驱动下,这些巨大的气候变化与尼罗河的流量相关,并且气候变化的研究表明近年来将出现更加极端的厄尔尼诺现象,从而印证了更可变的尼罗河流量的说法。

  • colossal:adj.巨大的

  • oscillations:n.振动

  • correlated:adj.有相互关系的

  • bolster:v.支持


More storage capacity will be needed to smooth out the Nile’s flow. But unlike Egypt’s large Aswan Dam, which was built with storage in mind, the new Ethiopian one is designed for electricity production. Once water starts gushing through its turbines, it is expected to produce over 6,000 megawatts of power. It is unclear, though, if the structure has the necessary flexibility to meet downstream demands in periods of prolonged drought.

因此需要存储更多的水量来缓解尼罗河的流量变化。但与埃及的大阿斯旺水坝不同,它是以存储的方式建造的,新埃塞俄比亚的是为电力生产而设计的。一旦水开始从涡轮机中喷涌出来,预计发电量将超过6000兆瓦。但是,目前尚不清楚是否该结构具备在长期干旱期间满足下游需求的必要的灵活性。

  • storage:n.贮存

  • gushing:v.喷,涌( gush的现在分词 )

  • turbine:n.涡轮机

  • megawatts:n.兆瓦,百万瓦特(电能计量单位)( megawatt的名词复数 )

  • structure:n.结构

  • prolonged:adj.持续很久的

The talks between the three countries seem to be glossing over the potential effects of climate change.(读者试译) The filling of the reservoir is being negotiated in terms of years, but nature may not co-operate with their timeline. The countries would be better off focusing on how much water is needed downstream, which will vary in wet and dry years, say experts. Similar considerations will need be taken into account when running the dam. “Nowhere in the world are two such large dams on the same river operated without close co-ordination,” says another study from MIT. But so far co-operation is in short supply. The latest round of talks has been postponed. Even the methodology of impact studies is cause for wrangling.

(期待您的翻译,明天会有针对这句话的长难句解析哟~)水库的填筑是以年为单位进行谈判的,但自然可能不配合他们的时间表。专家们说,这些国家不应继续将重点放在下游需要多少水上,因为随着干湿年份而有所不同。他们应该考虑的是水坝的运作。麻省理工学院的另一项研究表明:“世界上没有两个在同一条河流上的大坝是没有密切协调的运作的”。但到目前为止,合作仍是难以达成。最新一轮谈判已被推迟。甚至研究大坝造成的影响的方法也引起了各方的争论。

  • glossing:v.粉饰;注解( gloss的现在分词 );掩饰(错误);把…搪塞过去

  • postponed:v.延期,缓办,(使)延迟

  • methodology:n.(从事某一活动的)一套方法

  • wrangling:v.争吵,争论,口角( wrangle的现在分词 )


Once the dam is up and running, the Nile’s variability will be controllable for some 60 years, say Messrs Siam and Eltahir. That assumes the dam is flexible enough and that the countries work together. Even then, storage would have to be increased by about 45% to keep things steady for the next 60 years. So the countries have time to build new dams; but that will need even greater co-operation.

Messrs Siam和Eltahir说,一旦大坝建成并运行,尼罗河的流量变化将在大约60年内可以控制。但这要基于大坝具有足够的灵活性并且要在各国的共同努力的基础上才得以完成。即便如此,在接下来的60年里,储存量必须增加45%左右才能够保持尼罗河水量的稳定。如果这样的话,各国就有时间去建造新的水坝了,但这仍然需要进一步的合作。

  • assume:v.取得(权力)


翻译 ▍似水流年、孤岛

审核 ▍康康康

图文编辑 ▍Ternence

责任编辑 ▍毛毛

Try to translate 

The talks between the three countries seem to be glossing over the potential effects of climate change.

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音频和英文原文来自《经济学人》

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原文请订阅《经济学人》官方正版

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