9. Expressions for obligation, need and probability.

Julian, Bills brother, and Sam argue about climate change.

Main Practice: Expressions for obligation, need, probability
Revision:            on the contrary  -  disagree  -  rely on 

Vocabulary
cramped  -  a space that is too small, i.e.
  • His office is rather cramped

doubtful  -  uncertain; not probable or likely, i.e.
  • It's doubtful she will get the job.
  • They are doubtful the weather will be good enough to climb the mountain.
  • He's doubtful that his party will win the election.

every chance  -  a high probability of something, i.e.
  • There's every chance she will get the job.
  • The director claims there's every chance now of saving the company from bankruptcy. 

inevitable  -   certain to happen, i.e.
  • It is now inevitable that the workers will go on strike.
  • With all this rain it's inevitable that people's homes will be flooded.

may/might as well  -  better to do something than not do it, i.e.
  • Now we're in Paris we may / might as well go up the Eiffel Tower.
  • I may / might as well go to the picnic; Janet will be annoyed if I don't.

may well + infinitive  -   likely, i.e.
  • He may well want to come with us, we should ask him.
  • Robots may well take jobs from humans in the short term but long term they will
    benefit society.

myth  -  in this conversation ‘myth' means something that is widely held to be true, or was, but
                the speaker thinks is untrue, i.e.
  • It's a myth that building more roads will decrease traffic congestion, you'll just have more 
   cars filling up the new roads.
 
on the contrary  -  (formal) the opposite is true, i.e.
- The party was a great success.
- On the contrary, it was a disaster.

pace  -  the speed of something, especially 'change', i.e.
  • The pace of change in the last thirty years has been very fast.

  • (highly) probable  -  (neutral-formal) very likely to happen, (adjective-noun:
                                              high probability), i.e.
  • It is highly probable (that) the governement will reduce the import tax on cars.
  • There is a high probability of snow this weekend.

rubbish  -  (as an expression of disagreement - *can be rude if you don't know
                      the person well), i.e.
- David's a great chess player.
- Rubbish, I beat him easily and I'm not a good player. 

(to) run out of -  (Phrasal Verb) to not have any left, i.e.
- Shall we have pasta tonight?
- Sorry, we've run out of pasta.

virtually certain  -  almost but not completely certain, i.e.
  • It is virtually certain that the Education Minister will resign.
  • That world population will continue to rise for decades to come is virtually certain.
* As an example:
   inevitable             = 10
   virtually certain  =   9
   highly probable   =   7+
Samantha believes climate change is being caused by humans, her brother-in-law, Julian, disagrees and thinks it is part of a natural cycle.

Complete the sentences.

 
Julian:  Don't you guys feel cramped in that small car?

Sam:     Better for the environment, we get fifty miles to the gallon on fuel.

Julian:  Well, as it's highly that man-made climate change is a myth
                you may as well drive a bigger, more comfortable car.

Sam:      On the contrary, it's that the carbon dioxide we're
                putting into the atmosphere is the cause of climate change.

Julian:  I disagree, it's very that human beings are causing climate
                change. There's the warming is part of a natural cycle.

Sam:      Oh, rubbish, Julian, the global temperature is rising at a very fast pace.
                Most climate scientists agree on that. Humanity has
                cut the emissions of greenhouse gases.

Julian:  And there are highly respected scientists who disagree. If growing
                economies are made to reduce fossil fuels millions of people
                are liable to remain poor. Do you want that?

Sam:      Of course not, but when increasing use of fossil fuels may lead to
                catastrophic food and water shortages, to famine and war, then I
                think it's an that we find alternatives. And,
                anyway, isn't it crazy to rely on fossil fuels when it's
                that oil supplies will run out at some point?


Exercise

virtually certain  -  absolute necessity  -  doubtful  -  every chance  -  probable  -  inevitable  -  no choice but to  

1.  It is very that he will pay you the money back; he's not an honest man.

2.  We have sell the house: it's too big for us and too expensive to run.

3.  There's she'll pass the exam: it's her favourite subject and she's been
      studying very hard for it.

4.  It's highly she'll win the election.  (The speaker is '80%' certain she will win.)

5.  Warm clothing is an , even in summer the weather can turn suddenly
     cold in these mountains.

6.  It's that in thirty years or less people will be using flying cars.
     (The speaker is '90%' certain.)

7.   Further reduction in the Arctic ice sheet is . (The speaker is 100% certain.)