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UN suspends international trade in caviar

Date: Jan 4, 2006
Level: Harder (Try the easier lesson.)
Downloads: Word Doc | PDF Doc | Listening
Audio: (1:54 - 223.3 KB - 16kbps)
 
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THE ARTICLE

The United Nations has effectively banned international trading in caviar. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) has said it will not renew caviar export quotas for the Caspian Sea basin until exporters provide more information about stock levels, illegal sales and the sustainability of the threatened wild sturgeon, the fish that provides caviar. A CITES official said he was worried that quota requests did not sufficiently account for stock declines and poaching. Sturgeon species native to the shared Caspian Sea fishing area are suffering serious population declines, CITES said in a statement. The export ban affects Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran and Kazakhstan – the world’s primary caviar exporters.

The 169 signatories to CITES have established very strict conditions governing caviar exports. Exporters must collectively agree on scientifically ascertained data on catches and the populations of sturgeon. They must also adopt and adhere to a shared management plan. The onus is also on importing countries to take responsibility for ensuring fish stocks are not overly depleted. Importers such as the European Union have important obligations to ensure the legality of all caviar destined for its markets. CITES stated: “They must establish registration systems for their domestic processing and repackaging plants and rules for the labeling of repackaged caviar. Many key importing countries have still not put these measures in place.”

WARM-UPS

1. CAVIAR SEARCH: Talk to as many other students as you can to find out what they know about caviar. After you have talked to lots of students, sit down with your partner(s) and share your information. Tell each other what you thought was interesting or surprising. Have you ever eaten caviar?

2. ENDANGERED SPECIES: How much do you care about endangered species? Do you do anything to help protect them? In pairs / groups, talk about the following endangered species. Which ones are most important?

  • Sturgeon
  • Giant Panda
  • Mountain yellow-legged frog
  • Honest politicians
  • Cuban crocodile
  • Snow leopard
  • Kiwi
  • Leatherback sea turtle
  • Tooth cave spider
  • Blue Whale

3. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words are most interesting and which are most boring.

United Nations / international trade / caviar / endangered species / Caspian Sea / sturgeon / poaching / export bans / scientific data / taking responsibility / rules

Have a chat about the topics you liked. For more conversation, change topics and partners frequently.

4. EXPENSIVE DELICACIES: Are you accustomed to eating expensive or exotic food? What strange food have you tried? Would you try any of the food below? How much would you pay for them?

  • Caviar
  • Truffles
  • Whale meat
  • Shark’s fin soup
  • Kobe beef
  • Cobra blood
  • Blue crab
  • Other __________________

5. POACHING OPINIONS: Do you agree with these opinions?

  1. It isn’t a major global disaster if all sturgeon disappears from the Caspian Sea.
  2. Poaching is one of the biggest and most dangerous crimes known.
  3. Poachers steal from our children.
  4. Many people rely on poaching to be able to feed their family.
  5. All of the world’s children should receive weekly school lessons on conservation.
  6. It’s easy to breed enough animals in captivity to stop poachers in the wild.
  7. I would love to buy a snow leopard fur coat or an ivory ornament.
  8. People who buy products from endangered species should be put to death.
  9. The world doesn’t really care about poaching

6. BAN: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word “ban”. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

The UN has permanently banned the export of caviar.

T / F

b.

A UN agency wants information on the poaching of sturgeon.

T / F

c.

Numbers of sturgeon populations have increased dramatically.

T / F

d.

The world’s primary caviar exporters are in Central America.

T / F

e.

Only 16 countries worldwide signed a UN caviar exports agreement.

T / F

f.

Caviar-importing countries are under no obligation to check imports.

T / F

g.

The EU leaves the labeling and packaging of caviar to the exporters.

T / F

h.

Most major caviar importers have strict processing measures in place.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

a.

effectively

gathered

b.

fauna

indigenous

c.

threatened

members

d.

native

diminished

e.

primary

animals

f.

signatories

stick

g.

ascertained

responsibility

h.

adhere

pretty much

i.

onus

top

j.

depleted

endangered

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

a.

The UN has effectively banned

threatened wild sturgeon

b.

it will not renew caviar export

these measures in place

c.

the sustainability of the

for stock declines and poaching

d.

requests did not sufficiently account

governing caviar exports

e.

suffering serious

is also on importing countries

f.

established very strict conditions

international trading in caviar

g.

agree

quotas

h.

The onus

overly depleted

i.

ensuring fish stocks are not

population declines

j.

countries have still not put

on scientifically ascertained data

WHILE READING / LISTENING

WRONG WORD: Delete the incorrect or least likely word from the pairs in italics.

UN suspends international trade in caviar

The United Nations has effectively banned / panned international trading in caviar. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna / Sauna and Flora (CITES) has said it will not renew caviar export quotas for the Caspian Sea basin / bowl until exporters provide more information about stock levels, illegal sales and the sustainability of the threatening / threatened wild sturgeon, the fish that provides caviar. A CITES official said he was worried that quota requests / requiems did not sufficiently account / multiply for stock declines and poaching. Sturgeon species native to the shared Caspian Sea fishing area are suffering serious population declines, CITES said in a statement. The export / import ban affects Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran and Kazakhstan – the world’s primed / primary caviar exporters.

The 169 signatories / signatures to CITES have established very strict conditions governing caviar exports. Exporters must collectively jamboree / agree on scientifically ascertained data on catches / caches and the populations of sturgeon. They must also adopt / foster and adhere to a shared management plan. The onus / anus is also on importing countries to take responsibility for ensuring / insuring fish stocks are not overly depleted. Importers such as the European Union have important obligations to ensure the legality of all caviar destined / destroyed for its markets. CITES stated: “They must establish registration systems for their domestic processing and repackaging flowers / plants and rules for the labeling of repackaged caviar. Many key importing countries have still not put these measures in place.”

LISTENING

Listen and fill in the spaces.

UN suspends international trade in caviar

The United Nations has ___________ banned international trading in caviar. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild ______ and ______ (CITES) has said it will not renew caviar export quotas for the Caspian Sea ______ until exporters provide more information about stock levels, illegal sales and the sustainability of the threatened wild ___________, the fish that provides caviar. A CITES official said he was worried that quota requests did not sufficiently account for stock declines and ___________. Sturgeon species native to the shared Caspian Sea fishing area are suffering serious population _________, CITES said in a statement. The export ban affects Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran and Kazakhstan – the world’s _________ caviar exporters.

The 169 ___________ to CITES have established very strict conditions governing caviar exports. Exporters must collectively agree on scientifically ___________ data on catches and the populations of sturgeon. They must also adopt and adhere to a shared management plan. The ______ is also on importing countries to take responsibility for ensuring fish stocks are not overly __________. Importers such as the European Union have important obligations to ensure the legality of all caviar __________ for its markets. CITES stated: “They must establish registration systems for their domestic processing and ___________ plants and rules for the labeling of repackaged caviar. Many key importing countries have still not put these ___________ in place.”


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘united’ and ‘nation’.

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. WRONG WORD: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. STUDENT “POACHING” SURVEY: In pairs / groups, write down questions about poaching endangered species and the plight of the sturgeon.

  • Ask other classmates your questions and note down their answers.
  • Go back to your original partner / group and compare your findings.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

6. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall exactly how these were used in the text:

  • effectively
  • renew
  • sustainability
  • account
  • suffering
  • primary
  • strict
  • collectively
  • onus
  • obligations
  • establish
  • measures

DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

  1. Did the headline make you want to read the article?
  2. Do you like caviar?
  3. What do you know about caviar and sturgeon?
  4. Do you think the UN has made a good decision?
  5. How do you think the primary caviar exporters feel about this decision?
  6. How do you think the sturgeon feel about this decision?
  7. Do you think CITES has strong enough teeth to enforce the ban worldwide?
  8. What can CITES do to get the key importing countries to put regulatory measures in place?
  9. Would you buy any product if you had the slightest inkling it might have been illegally fished or hunted?
  10. Do you think the UN could solve this problem by encouraging the commercial breeding of sturgeon on legitimate fish farms?

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

  1. Did you like reading this article?
  2. What do you think about what you read?
  3. What are your fears for endangered species?
  4. Which endangered species do you fear for most?
  5. What punishment do you think should be given to sturgeon poachers?
  6. What punishment do you think should be given to giant panda poachers?
  7. What are the biggest problems for the primary exporters in implementing CITES’ regulations?
  8. Do you think the primary exporters aggressively adhere to CITES regulations?
  9. What more can the EU do to protect declining sturgeon populations?
  10. Did you like this discussion?

AFTER DISCUSSION: Join another partner / group and tell them what you talked about.

  1. What was the most interesting thing you heard?
  2. Was there a question you didn’t like?
  3. Was there something you totally disagreed with?
  4. What did you like talking about?
  5. Which was the most difficult question?

SPEAKING

ENDANGERED SPECIES: In pairs / groups, talk about the endangered species below. Agree on three things that could help the survival of each species.

SPECIES

TO HELP SURVIVAL
 

Caspian Sea sturgeon

1.

2.

3.

Well behaved children

1.

2.

3.

Blue whales

1.

2.

3.

Talented pop singers

1.

2.

3.

Giant pandas

1.

2.

3.

Honest politicians

1.

2.

3.

Change partners and tell you new partner(s) the two points you decided with your old partner(s).

Talk about which of your points are the most important. Which points are likeliest to be accepted?

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find more information on the Caspian Sea sturgeon. Share your findings with your class in the next lesson. Did you all find out similar things?

3. ENDANGERED: Make a poster on the plight of one endangered species. Show your posters to your classmates in the next lesson. Whose poster was best?

4. LETTER: Write a letter to the head of CITES. Tell him / her what you think he / she should do to protect the declining sturgeon populations.  Show what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Did everyone write similar things?

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a. F

b. T

c. F

d. F

e. F

f. F

g. F

h. F

SYNONYM MATCH:

a.

effectively

pretty much

b.

fauna

animals

c.

threatened

endangered

d.

native

indigenous

e.

primary

top

f.

signatories

members

g.

ascertained

gathered

h.

adhere

stick

i.

onus

responsibility

j.

depleted

diminished

PHRASE MATCH:

a.

The UN has effectively banned

international trading in caviar

b.

it will not renew caviar export

quotas

c.

the sustainability of the

threatened wild sturgeon

d.

requests did not sufficiently account

for stock declines and poaching

e.

suffering serious

population declines

f.

established very strict conditions

governing caviar exports

g.

agree

on scientifically ascertained data

h.

The onus

is also on importing countries

i.

ensuring fish stocks are not

overly depleted

j.

countries have still not put

these measures in place

WRONG WORD:

UN suspends international trade in caviar

The United Nations has effectively banned / panned international trading in caviar. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna / Sauna and Flora (CITES) has said it will not renew caviar export quotas for the Caspian Sea basin / bowl until exporters provide more information about stock levels, illegal sales and the sustainability of the threatening / threatened wild sturgeon, the fish that provides caviar. A CITES official said he was worried that quota requests / requiems did not sufficiently account / multiply for stock declines and poaching. Sturgeon species native to the shared Caspian Sea fishing area are suffering serious population declines, CITES said in a statement. The export / import ban affects Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran and Kazakhstan – the world’s primed / primary caviar exporters.

The 169 signatories / signatures to CITES have established very strict conditions governing caviar exports. Exporters must collectively jamboree / agree on scientifically ascertained data on catches / caches and the populations of sturgeon. They must also adopt / foster and adhere to a shared management plan. The onus / anus is also on importing countries to take responsibility for ensuring / insuring fish stocks are not overly depleted. Importers such as the European Union have important obligations to ensure the legality of all caviar destined / destroyed for its markets. CITES stated: “They must establish registration systems for their domestic processing and repackaging flowers / plants and rules for the labeling of repackaged caviar. Many key importing countries have still not put these measures in place.”

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