The 21-st century. 21-й век.

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About a decade ago, people were eagerly looking forward to ushering the new century-the 21st century with the hope of seeing a fresh beginning of human civilization. There is no denying that with the development of the IT industry and numerous other industries, people"s life is getting more and more convenient. However, I have to act as a wet blanket here, unwilling though I am, to point out that the blind "progressiveness" of human beings have caused an irretrievable disaster that is revealing its monstrous face in the new century.

The first sign of damaged nature appeared much earlier without being noticed by us. As a result, nature continues to be abused. My grandmother lives in the countryside. Years ago, when I was still a little girl, there was endless woods and crystal clear streams and rivers there, but now, what you can possibly find are chopped down wasteland and yellow-colored brooks. The environment is deteriorating in spite of a few people"s awareness of the danger.

Consequently, the deteriorated environment breeds a far more moody climate than before. My hometown is a beautiful seaside city. Living here for more than two decades, I did not see any sandstorm until this spring. I could hardly breathe or see things clearly in the yellowish air. I was in shock. Another example comes from a city afar near the Mediterranean. Floods devastate the summerhouses along the coast, aborting people"s plans for the summer and causing enormous damage to the economy of those countries.

Therefore, I want to say when you are surfing on line, browsing the messages sent through your cell phones and busy in doing biotechnological experiments, do not be overwhelmed by the benefits of the new century, instead, you should think more about how to protect the environment and thus improve the climate, which is indeed the biggest change brought by the new century.

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