Speech by Severn Suzuki: NBSE class 10 Alt English answers

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Here, you will find all the questions and answers of class 10 Alternative English chapter 3: Speech by Severn Suzuki for students studying under the Nagaland Board of School Education. Additional questions and solutions will be added soon. However, these notes should be used only for references. These materials should be modified/changed as per the needs.


In the speech by Severn Suzuki, she talks about the concern of children for the global ecological crisis brought on by adults in their bid to modernize the world. The present generation of children is, perhaps, the first to see the extent of the damage done to the environment and to realise that the effects cannot be repaired/reversed. The situation is serious; many species of animals and plants are already extinct, having lost their struggle for survival in polluted air and water. The only solution would be to stop exploiting the delicate ecological balance. This can happen only if all the nations in the world consider themselves as a global community strong to leave the world a better place for the generations to come. Severn pleads with elders to practice the sense of accountability they teach their children and to provide children the security they expect from adults.

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Textual questions and answers

Choose the Correct Option

1. Severn Suzuki’s 1992 speech is a ______

Answer: a. complaint

2. Why are the fish in Vancouver full of cancer?

Answer: a. Dumping of industrial waste into the lake.

3. Which of the following sentences from the speech best reflects the term ‘consumerism’?

Answer: b. Even when we have more than enough, we are afraid to share. We are afraid to let go of some of our wealth.

4. Why does Severn advocate sharing the world’s resources with needy countries?

Answer: Countries like India, Somalia and Brazil are mainly responsible for environmental degradation and resources from other countries will help in combating this.

5. You are deciding what kind of world we are growing up in. What does Severn mean by this?

Answer: c. As decision-makers and policymakers, adults are responsible for the choices that create their children’s future surroundings.

Read the lines and answer the questions that follow:

1. All this is happening before eyes and yet we act as if we have all the time we want and all the solutions.
a. What will happen if people don’t do something soon?
b. Why do you think people are not doing anything to help save the future?
c. What are some of the things you can do to help save the environment?

Answer: a. If people don’t do something soon, we will degrade the environment and world beyond a point from where there is no turning point. We will lose the only planet that we have and everything in it.

b. People are not doing anything to help save the future because everyone is either too careless about the looming danger or they don’t have a solution yet. They are consumed by other trivial problems like elections and greed and saving the environment is not their priority for now.

c. Some of the things that we can do to help save the environment is to create awareness, walk the talk, and share our resources with those who have less of them shunning our greed so that environmental degradation can be combated.

2. Are we even on your list of priorities?
a. What has made Severn doubt parents’ sincerity?
b. What does she think parents’ priorities are if not their children?
c. How can parents make sure their children are their top-most priority?

Answer: a. Though the parents’ always tell their children how to behave in the world and how they should live in harmony among fellow humans and other creatures, they themselves don’t follow what they preach. They are hurting the environment and putting the lives of the generations to come at risk due to their greed and misplaced priorities. That is why Severn doubt parents’ sincerity.

b. She thinks parents priorities are not children but possessions and privileges which is causing environmental degradation.

c. Parents can make sure their children are their top-most priority by following what they preach to their children and let their actions reflect their words. Their choices should be in alignment with the safety and survival of their children.

Answer these questions briefly

1.But really you are mothers and fathers. Why does Severn ask the delegates to consider themselves as members of a family?

Answer: Severn asks the delegates to consider themselves as members of a family because being the parts of the only world together, we are all connected and the well being of one reflects the well being of another. Though all the creatures of the world don’t belong to one species and the world is divided by walls and borders, being creatures of the same planet, we are all together and we have one home. People might have different nationalities and roles, they are but humans and when calamities strike due to environmental degradation, it affects everyone and even the generations to come. Therefore, it is a collective responsibility of all to work together as a family to save the only world we’ll ever have.

2. I wonder if they will even exist for my children to see. What is Severn referring to?

Answer: Severn is referring to the solace of seeing the beautiful animals of different kinds living together with humans without any threat of getting exterminated. She is complaining about how she dreamed of seeing the great herds of wild animals, jungles, and rainforests full of birds and butterflies but seeing how the environment is deteriorating due to the consequence of humans actions at an exceeding rate, she fears that her children and the generations to come after her will not even be able to see those animals as they would be extinct by then.

3. Please make your actions reflect your words. How can this be done?

Answer: This can be done by making choices keeping in mind the welfare of the generations to come and walking the talk of creating a fair and better world for everyone- even for the animals. Severn says that the adults teach the kids how to behave in the world, to work things out, to respect others, to clean up own mess, not to hurt other creatures, to share, not to be greedy, and yet, the adults go out and do the things they tell the children not to do. She says that the adults don’t follow what they preach and it is destroying the world and it is time they make their actions reflect their words by making the children their priorities and making choices for their safety and survival.

Think and answer

1. How does Severn Suzuki use persuasive language and emotional appeal in her speech to convey her message about environmental responsibility? Provide specific examples from the speech to support your analysis.

Answer: Severn Suzuki employs persuasive language and emotional appeal to highlight the importance of environmental responsibility by sharing personal experiences and invoking a sense of urgency. She directly addresses the impact of adult actions on future generations and the environment, stating, “I am here to speak for all generations to come.” Suzuki expresses fear and concern for her own future and the well-being of the planet, emphasizing the immediate and tangible consequences of environmental degradation. For instance, she mentions, “I am afraid to go out in the sun now because of the holes in our ozone. I am afraid to breathe the air because I don’t know what chemicals are in it.” Through these examples, Suzuki effectively uses emotional appeal to connect with her audience, urging them to consider the long-term effects of their actions on the environment and future generations.

2. In her speech, Severn Suzuki talks about the urgent need for environmental action. How can a country balance its development goals with the need to protect the environment?

Answer: Balancing development goals with the need to protect the environment requires adopting sustainable development practices that prioritize long-term environmental health alongside economic growth. This includes investing in renewable energy sources to reduce dependence on fossil fuels, enforcing regulations that limit pollution and protect natural habitats, and promoting eco-friendly technologies and practices among businesses and consumers. Countries can also encourage research and development in sustainable technologies and practices, providing incentives for companies that prioritize environmental responsibility. Furthermore, education and public awareness campaigns can play a crucial role in encouraging individuals and communities to adopt more sustainable lifestyles. Through these measures, countries can strive for development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Going beyond

Write essays for or against the following topics:

1. The global situation is better since Severn made this speech in 1992.

In addressing some of the environmental and social issues Severn Suzuki discussed in her 1992 speech at the United Nations Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro, there is no denying that significant progress has been made. For instance, the Montreal Protocol, an international agreement signed in 1987 to gradually phase out the production and consumption of ozone-depleting substances, has helped the ozone layer, which was threatened by the use of specific chemicals, recover. Additionally, many nations have seen a decline in greenhouse gas emissions as a result of international efforts to combat climate change, like the Paris Agreement.

The world still faces a number of challenges, and there is much work to be done in order to address these problems. For instance, climate change continues to pose a serious threat, and its effects, such as rising sea levels and an increase in the frequency of extreme weather events, are already being felt globally. Millions of people still struggle to access basic necessities like clean water and food, and inequality and poverty prevail in many regions of the world.

Conclusion: Despite some progress since Severn’s speech, there is still much to be done to address the problems our planet and its inhabitants face.

2. There is nothing much we can do as children to improve the global situation.

Children can still make a significant contribution to solving global problems, even though it is true that they may not have the same level of authority and influence as adults.

Children can influence society by becoming informed about the issues that matter to them and fighting for change. They could, for instance, advocate for environmental causes in their schools and communities and motivate others to act. ECO (the Environmental Children’s Organization), which Severn Suzuki represents in her speech, is one of the organisations that work on these issues and that kids can join. Children who take part in these groups can gain more knowledge about the problems and collaborate with others to find solutions.

Children can further contribute by making thoughtful decisions in their daily lives. For instance, they can opt to use fewer single-use plastics, energy-saving appliances and lightbulbs, and public transportation or carpooling instead of driving. These seemingly insignificant deeds can accumulate and have a sizable effect on the environment.

In conclusion, even though they might not be as powerful or influential as adults, children can still have an impact on how the world’s problems are solved. Children can make a big difference in the world by educating themselves, standing up for change, and making thoughtful decisions every day.

Extra MCQs

1. What is the primary objective of the Environmental Children’s Organization (ECO) founded by Severn Suzuki?

A. To fund trips to environmental conferences B. To educate children about environmental issues C. To organize protests D. To collaborate with adult environmentalists

Answer: B. To educate children about environmental issues

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20. What emotion does Severn express towards the end of her speech regarding adult actions?

A. Optimism B. Disappointment C. Happiness D. Satisfaction

Answer: B. Disappointment

Extra/additional questions and answers/solutions

1. Who is Severn Suzuki?

Answer: Severn Suzuki is a member of the Environmental Children’s Organization and a prominent environmentalist (ECO). She is renowned for giving a stirring speech at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992, during which she discussed the environmental issues the world is currently facing and urged adults to take action to preserve the environment for future generations.

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9. What does Severn Suzuki have to say about the issue of resource distribution and greed?

Answer: Severn Suzuki emphasises the problem of greed and the failure to share resources in wealthy nations, especially in regards to aiding those in need. She draws a comparison between the generosity of a street child who has nothing and is willing to share what they have and the greed of those who have more and are unwilling to give even a small portion of their wealth. She also emphasises the privilege, excess, and waste that exist in her own nation, Canada.

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