full transcript
"From the Ted Talk by Jonathan Foley: The other inconvenient truth"

Unscramble the Blue Letters

Well, that's not even the worst example in the wlrod. This probably is: the Aral Sea. Now, a lot you will remember this from your geography classes. This is in the former Soviet Union in between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, one of the great inland seas of the world. But there's kind of a paradox here, because it looks like it's srdreunuod by deerst. Why is this sea here? The reason it's here is because, on the right-hand side, you see two little rerivs kind of coming down through the sand, feeding this basin with wtaer. Those rivers are draining snowmelt from mountains far to the east, where snow melts, it travels down the river through the desert, and forms the great Aral Sea. Well, in the 1950s, the Soviets decided to devrit that water to irrigate the desert to grow cotton, believe it or not, in Kazakhstan, to sell cotton to the international markets to bring foreign ccnerury into the Soviet Union. They really neeedd the money. Well, you can imagine what happens. You turn off the water supply to the Aral Sea, what's going to happen? Here it is in 1973, 1986, 1999, 2004, and about 11 mtohns ago. It's pretty erriradonxtay. Now a lot of us in the audience here live in the Midwest. imnigae that was Lake Superior. Imagine that was Lake Huron. It's an extraordinary change.

Open Cloze

Well, that's not even the worst example in the _____. This probably is: the Aral Sea. Now, a lot you will remember this from your geography classes. This is in the former Soviet Union in between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, one of the great inland seas of the world. But there's kind of a paradox here, because it looks like it's __________ by ______. Why is this sea here? The reason it's here is because, on the right-hand side, you see two little ______ kind of coming down through the sand, feeding this basin with _____. Those rivers are draining snowmelt from mountains far to the east, where snow melts, it travels down the river through the desert, and forms the great Aral Sea. Well, in the 1950s, the Soviets decided to ______ that water to irrigate the desert to grow cotton, believe it or not, in Kazakhstan, to sell cotton to the international markets to bring foreign ________ into the Soviet Union. They really ______ the money. Well, you can imagine what happens. You turn off the water supply to the Aral Sea, what's going to happen? Here it is in 1973, 1986, 1999, 2004, and about 11 ______ ago. It's pretty _____________. Now a lot of us in the audience here live in the Midwest. _______ that was Lake Superior. Imagine that was Lake Huron. It's an extraordinary change.

Solution

  1. months
  2. world
  3. rivers
  4. needed
  5. water
  6. imagine
  7. desert
  8. divert
  9. currency
  10. surrounded
  11. extraordinary

Original Text

Well, that's not even the worst example in the world. This probably is: the Aral Sea. Now, a lot you will remember this from your geography classes. This is in the former Soviet Union in between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, one of the great inland seas of the world. But there's kind of a paradox here, because it looks like it's surrounded by desert. Why is this sea here? The reason it's here is because, on the right-hand side, you see two little rivers kind of coming down through the sand, feeding this basin with water. Those rivers are draining snowmelt from mountains far to the east, where snow melts, it travels down the river through the desert, and forms the great Aral Sea. Well, in the 1950s, the Soviets decided to divert that water to irrigate the desert to grow cotton, believe it or not, in Kazakhstan, to sell cotton to the international markets to bring foreign currency into the Soviet Union. They really needed the money. Well, you can imagine what happens. You turn off the water supply to the Aral Sea, what's going to happen? Here it is in 1973, 1986, 1999, 2004, and about 11 months ago. It's pretty extraordinary. Now a lot of us in the audience here live in the Midwest. Imagine that was Lake Superior. Imagine that was Lake Huron. It's an extraordinary change.

ngrams of length 2

collocation frequency
aral sea 7
soviet union 5
billion people 5
climate change 5
greenhouse gases 4
grow food 4
south america 3

Important Words

  1. aral
  2. audience
  3. basin
  4. bring
  5. change
  6. classes
  7. coming
  8. cotton
  9. currency
  10. decided
  11. desert
  12. divert
  13. draining
  14. east
  15. extraordinary
  16. feeding
  17. foreign
  18. forms
  19. geography
  20. great
  21. grow
  22. happen
  23. huron
  24. imagine
  25. inland
  26. international
  27. irrigate
  28. kazakhstan
  29. kind
  30. lake
  31. live
  32. lot
  33. markets
  34. melts
  35. midwest
  36. money
  37. months
  38. mountains
  39. needed
  40. paradox
  41. pretty
  42. reason
  43. remember
  44. river
  45. rivers
  46. sand
  47. sea
  48. seas
  49. sell
  50. side
  51. snow
  52. snowmelt
  53. soviet
  54. soviets
  55. superior
  56. supply
  57. surrounded
  58. travels
  59. turn
  60. union
  61. uzbekistan
  62. water
  63. world
  64. worst