IELTS® General Reading Practice 15

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The outlook for the global demand of oil is of increasing importance, not only for energy companies, but also for the general population as a whole. Due to its prevalence, it is easy to take for granted the numerous ways in which oil helps fuel daily activities, ranging from basic household functions to industrial endeavors in factories and global companies. Additionally, oil demand's growth will determine transportation methods and the choices that consumers, producers and policy-makers will be forced to make in order to keep up with global trends. The following report will highlight how emerging markets, transportation, economic instability and climate change will have an impact on the positioning and success of oil companies. 

Population is a key force behind the demand for energy and its consumption.  Over the next two decades, low and medium-income economies, otherwise known as emerging markets, are expected to grow at a continued pace. Along with this continued pace, income growth is set to be on an upwards trend as well. Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations.  Large populations in China and India are expected to move out of poverty and begin (or in some cases, continue) fuel-based means of travel by the year 2035. This expectation has been assumed to fuel the global demand for oil to around 109 million barrels per day. On the contrary, established markets have shifted towards more fuel-efficient automobiles, including hybrid models and even those with electric options. Not only has this shift introduced new automobiles to the market, but it has brought along the possibility of conflicting predictions. For example, depending on the popularity of these new cars, economists argue that the global demand for oil risks stagnation at around 85 million barrels per day, upheld by the demand from emerging markets. If proved correct, this would be a drastic change from the original assumption involving a demand of 109 million barrels per day.

When looking at the transportation sector as a whole, including energy consumed in moving people and goods by road, rail, air, water and pipeline, a sharp increase is expected. Specifically, this sector is predicted to grow extensively throughout the next four decades. Out of the total world energy consumption in 2012, the transportation sector accounted for twenty-six percent of this consumption, with an expected increase of 1.1 percent per year until 2040. After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry. Of course, the opposite could prove to be true if sufficient alternative fuel sources are developed. In this case, the demand for oil would decrease and substitutes for oil would be sufficient to satisfy customers, resulting in an elastic demand.

Although transportation and automobiles serve as strong factors in the global demand for oil, many believe that the state of the economy has the power to completely change the projected course of oil's demand. According to OPEC analysts, economic instability in Europe concerning the Euro could limit the economic recovery and decrease the demand for oil. Energy consumption in residential areas such as homes (primarily used for heating, cooling, lighting and water heating) is predicted to account for about fourteen percent of energy consumption by 2040. Due to this economic uncertainty, non-profit groups that seek to help those in financial crises have been created throughout Europe. With the assistance of these groups, an average European family is expected to consume more energy, thanks to financial assistance in the form of grants and loans. In turn, this would impact the demand for energy consumption on a basic level. In any case, China and India will most likely continue as leading contributors to residential energy demand due to their rapid economic and population growth projections.

Developed countries, on the other hand, are driving climate change to heights that have never been seen before. Extreme weather events, record-setting temperatures and rising oceans are causing incredible amounts of damage on hundreds of millions of lives in the global community. As such, climate change is responsible for raising oil prices to the highest they have ever been in recent times. Economists suspect that climate change has the possibility to shift the entire projected demands for oil from both emerging markets and developed countries. Consequently, popular oil companies have included revamped, company-wide short-term objectives that promote energy efficiency, by using existing technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a cost effective manner, while also supporting the development of new technologies and climate research. Fuel and energy companies are also drawn to the fact that new development and research practices could minimize costs and lessen the negative impacts on the environment.

28. C - The statement, “Due to this economic uncertainty, non-profit groups that seek to help those in financial crises have been created throughout Europe.” proves this to be correct.  
29. A - The statement, “Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations. “ proves this to be correct. 
30. D - The statement, “As such, climate change is responsible for raising oil prices to the highest they have ever been in recent times.” proves this to be correct. 
31. B - The statements, “After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry.” prove this to be correct.
32. A - The statement, "Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations." shows that emerging markets is the correct answer, since "a surge in car ownership" is synonymous with "an increase in the possession of transportation methods". This should not be confused with the statements, "After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel.” since these statements do not prove "ownership" or "possession" of these transportation methods.
33. C - The statement, “According to OPEC analysts, economic instability in Europe concerning the Euro could limit the economic recovery and decrease the demand for oil.” shows that this is correct. The phrase, "limit the economic recovery" is synonymous with the question statement, "weakening the recuperation of resource management". Also keep in mind that "economy" can be understood as "resource management" on a societal scale.
34. YES - The statement, “The outlook for the global demand of oil is of increasing importance, not only for energy companies, but also for the general population as a whole.” shows that this is correct.
35. NO -  The statement, “Additionally, oil demand's growth will determine transportation methods and the choices that consumers, producers and policy-makers will be forced to make in order to keep up with global trends.” shows that producers and consumers will be faced with this as well.
36. NOT GIVEN - The statement, "Population is a key force behind the demand for energy and its consumption." does not prove that it is the "biggest" force, as stated in the question. The text solely states that it is a "key force", and further information regarding the "biggest" force is not given. The text further explains other forces behind the demand for energy, such as emerging markets, and does not specify which is the 'biggest'. Therefore, the information in the text does not contradict or confirm the question.
37. NOT GIVEN - This information is not included in the passage. Keep in mind that the statements, "When looking at the transportation sector as a whole, including energy consumed in moving people and goods by road, rail, air, water and pipeline, a sharp increase is expected. Specifically, this sector is predicted to grow extensively throughout the next four decades." do not confirm nor contradict the question statement. Do not get confused with the fact that "next four decades" is used in the text, whereas "past four decades" is included in the question statement.
38. YES - The statement, Out of the total world energy consumption in 2012, the transportation sector accounted for twenty-six percent of this consumption, with an expected increase of 1.1 percent per year until 2040.” shows that this is correct. Do not get confused with the statements, “Of course, the opposite could prove to be true if sufficient alternative fuel sources are developed. In this case, the demand for oil would decrease and substitutes for oil would be sufficient to satisfy customers, resulting in an elastic demand.”, which refer to an increase in oil demand, not growth of the transportation sector.
39. NO - The statement, “After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry.” show that motorbikes do indeed factor in. Therefore, this would be NO.
40. NOT GIVEN - This information is not provided in the text. Do not get confused with the statements, “With the assistance of these groups, an average European family is expected to consume more energy, thanks to financial assistance in the form of grants and loans. In turn, this would impact the demand for energy consumption on a basic level.”, which do not discuss the economic crisis, but only energy consumption.




This reading practice simulates the third section of the IELTS General Reading test. You should spend about twenty minutes on it. Read the passage(s) and answer questions 28-40.
Questions 28-33
Look at the following statements (Questions 28-33) and A list of terms below.

Match each statement with the correct term A, B, C, or D.

Write the correct number A-D in boxes Questions 28-33 on your answer sheet.

NB You may use any letter more than once.
A list of terms
  1. Emerging Markets
  2. Transportation
  3. Economic Instability
  4. Climate Change

28. The organization of various groups to help relieve crisis.

29. Increased car ownership

30. Raising oil prices to never-before-seen numbers.

31. Additional jobs and services in the fuel industry

32. Increasing demand for oil to approximately 109 million barrels per day.

33. Weakening the recuperation of resource management

Questions 34-40
Do the following statements agree with the information given in the reading passage? In boxes 34-40 on your answer sheet, write

YES   if the statement reflects the claims of the writer
NO   if the statement contradicts the claims of the writer
NOT GIVEN   if it is impossible to say what the writer thinks about this

34. The future of the demand of oil concerns the entire global community.

35. Only policy-makers will be faced with adapting to global oil trends.

36. Population is the biggest force behind energy consumption.

37. The transportation sector has grown extensively in the past four decades.

38. The transportation sector will most likely continue to grow just under two percent each year.

39. Motorbikes do not factor into energy demand due to their engine speeds.

40. Economic instability in Europe will most likely subside.






Answer Sheet
1
N/A
2
N/A
3
N/A
4
N/A
5
N/A
6
N/A
7
N/A
8
N/A
9
N/A
10
N/A
11
N/A
12
N/A
13
N/A
14
N/A
15
N/A
16
N/A
17
N/A
18
N/A
19
N/A
20
N/A
21
N/A
22
N/A
23
N/A
24
N/A
25
N/A
26
N/A
27
N/A
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40


Reading Passage Vocabulary
The Global Demand of Oil: A Forecast


The outlook for the global demand of oil is of increasing importance, not only for energy companies, but also for the general population as a whole. Due to its prevalence, it is easy to take for granted the numerous ways in which oil helps fuel daily activities, ranging from basic household functions to industrial endeavors in factories and global companies. Additionally, oil demand's growth will determine transportation methods and the choices that consumers, producers and policy-makers will be forced to make in order to keep up with global trends. The following report will highlight how emerging markets, transportation, economic instability and climate change will have an impact on the positioning and success of oil companies. 

Population is a key force behind the demand for energy and its consumption.  Over the next two decades, low and medium-income economies, otherwise known as emerging markets, are expected to grow at a continued pace. Along with this continued pace, income growth is set to be on an upwards trend as well. Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations.  Large populations in China and India are expected to move out of poverty and begin (or in some cases, continue) fuel-based means of travel by the year 2035. This expectation has been assumed to fuel the global demand for oil to around 109 million barrels per day. On the contrary, established markets have shifted towards more fuel-efficient automobiles, including hybrid models and even those with electric options. Not only has this shift introduced new automobiles to the market, but it has brought along the possibility of conflicting predictions. For example, depending on the popularity of these new cars, economists argue that the global demand for oil risks stagnation at around 85 million barrels per day, upheld by the demand from emerging markets. If proved correct, this would be a drastic change from the original assumption involving a demand of 109 million barrels per day.

When looking at the transportation sector as a whole, including energy consumed in moving people and goods by road, rail, air, water and pipeline, a sharp increase is expected. Specifically, this sector is predicted to grow extensively throughout the next four decades. Out of the total world energy consumption in 2012, the transportation sector accounted for twenty-six percent of this consumption, with an expected increase of 1.1 percent per year until 2040. After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry. Of course, the opposite could prove to be true if sufficient alternative fuel sources are developed. In this case, the demand for oil would decrease and substitutes for oil would be sufficient to satisfy customers, resulting in an elastic demand.

Although transportation and automobiles serve as strong factors in the global demand for oil, many believe that the state of the economy has the power to completely change the projected course of oil's demand. According to OPEC analysts, economic instability in Europe concerning the Euro could limit the economic recovery and decrease the demand for oil. Energy consumption in residential areas such as homes (primarily used for heating, cooling, lighting and water heating) is predicted to account for about fourteen percent of energy consumption by 2040. Due to this economic uncertainty, non-profit groups that seek to help those in financial crises have been created throughout Europe. With the assistance of these groups, an average European family is expected to consume more energy, thanks to financial assistance in the form of grants and loans. In turn, this would impact the demand for energy consumption on a basic level. In any case, China and India will most likely continue as leading contributors to residential energy demand due to their rapid economic and population growth projections.

Developed countries, on the other hand, are driving climate change to heights that have never been seen before. Extreme weather events, record-setting temperatures and rising oceans are causing incredible amounts of damage on hundreds of millions of lives in the global community. As such, climate change is responsible for raising oil prices to the highest they have ever been in recent times. Economists suspect that climate change has the possibility to shift the entire projected demands for oil from both emerging markets and developed countries. Consequently, popular oil companies have included revamped, company-wide short-term objectives that promote energy efficiency, by using existing technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a cost effective manner, while also supporting the development of new technologies and climate research. Fuel and energy companies are also drawn to the fact that new development and research practices could minimize costs and lessen the negative impacts on the environment.

28. C - The statement, “Due to this economic uncertainty, non-profit groups that seek to help those in financial crises have been created throughout Europe.” proves this to be correct.  
29. A - The statement, “Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations. “ proves this to be correct. 
30. D - The statement, “As such, climate change is responsible for raising oil prices to the highest they have ever been in recent times.” proves this to be correct. 
31. B - The statements, “After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry.” prove this to be correct.
32. A - The statement, "Economic outlooks, including Alliance News, predict that emerging markets will bring a surge in car ownership, which will increase the long-term global demand for oil more than past expectations." shows that emerging markets is the correct answer, since "a surge in car ownership" is synonymous with "an increase in the possession of transportation methods". This should not be confused with the statements, "After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel.” since these statements do not prove "ownership" or "possession" of these transportation methods.
33. C - The statement, “According to OPEC analysts, economic instability in Europe concerning the Euro could limit the economic recovery and decrease the demand for oil.” shows that this is correct. The phrase, "limit the economic recovery" is synonymous with the question statement, "weakening the recuperation of resource management". Also keep in mind that "economy" can be understood as "resource management" on a societal scale.
34. YES - The statement, “The outlook for the global demand of oil is of increasing importance, not only for energy companies, but also for the general population as a whole.” shows that this is correct.
35. NO -  The statement, “Additionally, oil demand's growth will determine transportation methods and the choices that consumers, producers and policy-makers will be forced to make in order to keep up with global trends.” shows that producers and consumers will be faced with this as well.
36. NOT GIVEN - The statement, "Population is a key force behind the demand for energy and its consumption." does not prove that it is the "biggest" force, as stated in the question. The text solely states that it is a "key force", and further information regarding the "biggest" force is not given. The text further explains other forces behind the demand for energy, such as emerging markets, and does not specify which is the 'biggest'. Therefore, the information in the text does not contradict or confirm the question.
37. NOT GIVEN - This information is not included in the passage. Keep in mind that the statements, "When looking at the transportation sector as a whole, including energy consumed in moving people and goods by road, rail, air, water and pipeline, a sharp increase is expected. Specifically, this sector is predicted to grow extensively throughout the next four decades." do not confirm nor contradict the question statement. Do not get confused with the fact that "next four decades" is used in the text, whereas "past four decades" is included in the question statement.
38. YES - The statement, Out of the total world energy consumption in 2012, the transportation sector accounted for twenty-six percent of this consumption, with an expected increase of 1.1 percent per year until 2040.” shows that this is correct. Do not get confused with the statements, “Of course, the opposite could prove to be true if sufficient alternative fuel sources are developed. In this case, the demand for oil would decrease and substitutes for oil would be sufficient to satisfy customers, resulting in an elastic demand.”, which refer to an increase in oil demand, not growth of the transportation sector.
39. NO - The statement, “After examining the various methods of travel, road transport remains the largest factor in energy demand. The most common and popular examples used on a global scale include automobiles, motorbikes, and large buses used for passenger travel. Thus, the transport sector provides reasoning for an increase in service stations, gas stations, and careers in the fuel industry.” show that motorbikes do indeed factor in. Therefore, this would be NO.
40. NOT GIVEN - This information is not provided in the text. Do not get confused with the statements, “With the assistance of these groups, an average European family is expected to consume more energy, thanks to financial assistance in the form of grants and loans. In turn, this would impact the demand for energy consumption on a basic level.”, which do not discuss the economic crisis, but only energy consumption.

 
IELTS General Reading Tips for Success
These are general tips that will appear on all reading questions.

Tips to improve your reading speed
To get a high score on the IELTS reading section, you need to have a fast reading speed. To have a fast reading speed, you need to improve your vocabulary and practice dissecting sentences. One strategy to dissect a sentence is to look for the subject and verb of the sentence. Finding the subject and verb will help you better understand the main idea of said sentence. Keep in mind, a common feature of a IELTS reading passage is to join strings of ideas to form long compound sentences. This produces large chunks that students have a hard time absorbing. Do not get overwhelmed by its length, just look for the subject and verb, the rest of the ideas will flow.


Keep in mind, having a slow reading speed makes skimming or scanning a reading passage more difficult. The process of quickly skimming through a reading passage for specific keywords or main ideas is a requirement for you to employ successful reading strategies to improve your IELTS reading score. In other words, skimming and scanning are critical skills to ensure you complete all questions in the allotted time frame.
IELTS Reading Strategies
Once you can read and comprehend a passage with a rate of, at least, 220 words per minute, you'll be ready to start implementing our strategies. All too often, students spend too much time reading the passages and not enough time answering the questions. Here is a step by step guide for tackling the reading section.

  1. Step 1: Read questions first

    One of the most common mistakes that candidates make when approaching the reading exam is reading every single word of the passages. Although you can practice for the exam by reading for pleasure, "reading blindly" (reading without any sense of what the questions will ask) will not do you any favors in the exam. Instead, it will hurt your chances for effectively managing your time and getting the best score.

    The main reason to read the questions first is because the type of question may determine what you read in the passage or how you read it. For example, some question types will call for the "skimming" technique, while others may call for the "scanning" technique.

    It is important to answer a set of questions that are of the same question type. You'll need to determine which question type you want to tackle first. A good strategy would be to start with the easier question type and move on to more difficult question types later. The Easiest question types are the ones where you spend less time reading. For example, the Matching Heading question type is an easier one because you only need to find the heading that best describes the main idea of a paragraph. An example of a difficult question type would be Identifying Information. For this question type, you'll need to read each paragraph to find out if each statement is TRUE, FALSE, or NOT GIVEN according to the passage.

    Here is a table that lists the difficulty levels for each question type. Use this table as a reference when choosing which question type you want to tackle first.


    Difficulty level Question Type
    Easy Sentence Completion
    Short answer
    Medium Matching Features
    Multiple choice
    Matching Headings
    Summary, Table, Flow-Chart Completion
    Difficult Matching Sentence Endings
    Matching Information
    Identifying Information (TRUE/FALSE/NOT GIVEN)
    Identifying Viewer's claims (YES/NO/NOT GIVEN)

  2. Step 2: Read for an objective

    After you've read the questions for the passage, you will be able to read for an objective. What does this mean? For example, if you come across a question that includes the year "1896", you can make a note of when this year comes up in the text, using it to answer the question later on. There are two reading techniques that will help you stay on track with reading for an objective. The first one, skimming, is best defined as reading fast in order to get the "gist", or general idea, or a passage. With this technique, you are not stopping for any unfamiliar words or looking for specific details. The second technique, scanning, is best defined as reading for specific information. With this technique, you are not reading for the overall gist, but rather, specific information. Notice how each of these techniques has a specific objective in mind. This will help you find information more quickly.

  3. Step 3: Take notes

    As you're reading for an objective, you should also be making notes on the margins of the passage, placing stars next to key information, or underlining things that you believe will help you answer the various questions. This will make it easier for you to check back when you are asked certain things in the questions. Choose whichever note-taking system is right for you - just make sure you do it!

  4. Step 4: Answer wisely

    After you've read the questions, read the passage, and have taken any appropriate notes, you you should have located the part of the text where you where you need to read carefully. Then just read carefully and think critically to determine the correct answer.

 
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