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Interrelations between man and the biosphere are of a fairly complex nature. Man, like every other living organism, depends for his life on what the biosphere provides: water, oxygen, food and shelter. On the other hand, the biosphere is strongly affected by all sorts of human activity.

About 200 years ago man lived in greater harmony with his environment because industry was not developed. Prehistoric man withdrew from atmosphere only the oxygen he required for respiration. Today the situation is quite different. Modern man consumes a far greater amount of oxygen to support fires, power plants and chemical processes. The carbon dioxide produced by technological processes has greatly changed the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere. The technology has introduced into the biosphere man-made radio-isotopes and a wide variety of synthetic materials such as plastics, insecticides, herbicides and numerous industrial materials. These substances and materials alter the biosphere.

The problem of the environmental crisis has recently assumed global proportions. Scientists say, that unless some radical steps are taken, life on our planet may be irrevocably damaged, if not destroyed altogether.

The Earth provides people with mineral resources, rivers and forests. The resources demand rational use. But very often a man can not cope with this task. As a result nature and people suffer. Such vital sources of life as air, water, minerals, fauna and flora are being wasted and destroyed. Some animal species and plants have become extinct. When this happens the Red Fish die in the lakes, rivers and seas, while trees die in the forests.

The Earth is our home. We must take care of our home. The protection of nature has become one of the real problems of the 20th century. More and more people in all countries are raising their voices in defence of nature.

Concern about the preservation of the environment and its protection from pollution as well as concern about our limited natural resources has given rise to a powerful movement throughout the world. This movement is called environmentalism from the English word environment. Everybody knows that the Baikal is being saved, not only by the Russian people but also by foreigners and by an international organisation Greenpeace.


2. Find in the text English equivalents to the following words and word combinations:


взаємодія, живий організм, залежати від, біосфера, діяльність людини, впливати, брати з атмосфери, кисень, дихання, концентрація в атмосфері, засоби від комах, гербіциди, раціональне використання, зникнути, захист природи, міжнародна організація.


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