This week in Perfect English with Danny Podcast, we will be talking about global problems. We will talk about natural disasters, the verbs we use with natural disasters, the people involved in disasters and finally the top ten global problems.

We talked about natural disasters in episode 136 and episode 137, we talked about people involved in disasters and tragedies in episode 138. In this episode, we will talk about the top ten global issues.

Episode 139 – Global Problems – Top Ten Global Issues

Episode 139 Full Transcript


Hello and welcome to another episode from Perfect English with Danny. Today we will continue talking about our theme for this week, global problems. We have talked so far about natural disasters, and people involved in disasters. If you didn’t have the chance to listen to these episodes, they’re episodes 136, 137 and 138, so check them out if you like.

In this episode, we will focus on the top ten global issues or problems. 

But before we start, let me remind you that in order to make things more understandable, we will translate the keywords into as many languages as possible in the show and in the link you will find in the description of the episode, you can find the translations into 62 languages and today’s episode transcript. There are also the interactive and downloadable activities, which are available to download using the link you can find in the description of the episode. These activities are very useful to retain the new words you learn and add them to your active vocabulary bank.

So, without further ado, let’s get cracking.

Today, we will be talking about climate change, pollution, violence, security and wellbeing, lack of education, unemployment, government corruption, malnourishment and hunger, substance abuse, and terrorism.  

So, which global problem do you think is the most serious, Ben?


Well, for me they are all serious, but you know we tend to ignore problems we do not see or feel. Maybe, I am most concerned about substance abuse because I have a teenage son, so I can feel this problem and I don’t want my son to get involved in drugs. That’s why this might be the most serious problem for me at the moment, but undoubtedly, the biggest problem of all is climate change because if it goes on ignored as it is today, it might lead to our extinction along with all living things on this planet. However, the big problem about this problem is that people can not feel it or see it, so they just don’t care as much.


You’re right and that is really dangerous because if we wait to the moment when we can directly feel the effects of global warming or climate change, it will be too late.


But you know, sometimes I think that because of what we have done to our planet, it does have the right to get rid of us one day. We are just guests here, but we still think that we are more important than all other living beings on this planet. I mean bees are more useful to this planet than us. We haven’t been doing anything but using the resources of this planet for unnecessary reasons.


Well, you can’t say that. We have used most of our planet’s natural resources to arm ourselves and kill each other.


Yeah, you’re right. We use natural resources to kill each other, so if nature kills us one day, I don’t see why that should be surprising at all.


Well, you know that is a discussion that can go for hours and hours, but my friend, let’s focus on the ten global issues and explain what they mean.


All right, let’s start with climate change. Climate change refers to changes in the earth’s climate, especially the gradual rise in temperature caused by high levels of carbon dioxide and other gases.


It is true that the temperature of the Earth changed in the past, but most scientists believe that climate change today is happening because of the way people live.


That’s true. We are accelerating this problem with our lifestyles that are mostly not eco-friendly.


Now whenever you talk about climate change, you have the word global warming mentioned. They technically mean the same thing, so it doesn’t matter which one you use, you are talking about the same thing.


So, climate change in English is:

French: changement climatique

Spanish: cambio climático

Italian: cambiamento climatico

German: Klimawechsel

Portuguese: mudança do clima

Arabic: تغيير مناخي


So, climate change was our first global issue. The second one is pollution. What is pollution, Ben?


Pollution is poisonous or dirty substances that are polluting the water, air, or land somewhere.


And the main reason for pollution is us. The air, water and land were just fine before the industrial age. I am not saying that we should go back in time and get rid of all our industries, but the industrial age, especially in modern times became too greedy and stingy to spend any money on cleaning the environment it is polluting. Some countries force industries to spend money on improving the environmental conditions, especially around their factories, but other countries don’t.


And the funny thing is when these developed countries pass laws against pollution, factory owners shut down their factories and move them to a poor country where they can pollute the air as much they like and there is the added benefit of cheap labor as well. The fools think that the air they’re polluting halfway across the globe is not coming back to bite them later. It is the same air we breathe all around the world. We have one atmosphere that we all share.


That’s right, but some people only care about maximizing the profits they make no matter what. So, if they listen to what we are saying, they will laugh at us and think we are fools.


Yeah, I don’t mind being a fool. I know a fool can sleep well at night. So, pollution is our word:

French: pollution

Spanish: contaminación

Italian: inquinamento

German: Umweltverschmutzung

Portuguese: poluição

Arabic: تلوث


All right, so climate change and pollution, now let’s talk about violence. Violence is behavior which is intended to hurt, injure, or kill people. If you do or say something with violence, you use a lot of force and energy in doing or saying it, often because you are angry. But that is what the word violence means, how about violence as a global issue?


Violence can be found in the social, cultural and economic aspects of the world. Whether it is conflict that has broken out in a city, hatred targeted at a certain group of people or sexual harassment occurring on the street, violence is a preventable problem that has been an issue for longer than necessary. With continued work on behalf of the governments of all nations, as well as the individual citizens, the issue can be addressed and reduced.


Do you really believe that we, as humans, can stop being so violent one day?


I believe we can; why can’t we be like Gandhi, Mandela or Martin Luther King. I am not saying they were angels, not at all. We are humans; we are not angels. We are bound to make mistakes, but we should step away from solving our problems by killing each other as much we can.


I hope we can do that one day. You see, I am not as optimistic as you are, but I hope we can let go of our violent nature before we do that on the brink of our extinction.


So, the word is violence:

French: violence

Spanish: violencia

Italian: violenza

German: Gewalt

Portuguese: violência

Arabic: عنف


Now our next global issue is security and wellbeing. Well, Security refers to all the measures that are taken to protect a place or the people who live in a place, and Someone’s well-being is their health and happiness. So, the two are interconnected. If there is no security, wellbeing is very difficult to achieve in a community, a country or worldwide.


Ok, so security is:

French: sécurité

Spanish: seguridad

Italian: sicurezza

German: Sicherheit

Portuguese: segurança

Arabic: أمن

And wellbeing is:

French: bien-être

Spanish: bienestar

Italian: benessere

German: Wohlbefinden

Portuguese: bem-estar

Arabic: رفاهية


All right, our next issue is lack of education. Well, we know the meaning of education, but the word we need to know about is lack, and we usually say the lack of something. If there is a lack of something, there is not enough of it or it does not exist at all. Ben, why is the lack of education is a global problem?


Well, because more than 72 million children throughout the globe that are of the age to be in primary education are not enrolled in school. This can be attributed to inequality and marginalization as well as poverty. And the real problem when children do not receive any education especially in communities where crime prevails is that they are easy targets for these crime rings. Most of gang criminals or even terrorists are uneducated people. I am not saying that education is the key for a better future. I have a lot of reservations on education today, especially the business that it has become, but at least, it gives you a chance for a better life.


I see what you mean. And lack of education can also lead to the next global issue, unemployment. Unemployment is the fact that people who want jobs cannot get them. Without the necessary education and skills for employment, many people, particularly 15- to 24-year olds, struggle to find jobs and create a proper living for themselves and their families. This leads to a lack of necessary resources, such as enough food, clothing, transportation and proper living conditions. That may contribute to increasing poverty around the globe, which is one the biggest problems in the world. Poverty can lead to many other issues, like the ones we are talking about.


That’s right, but before you continue, let me tell you what unemployment means in other languages:

French: chômage

Spanish: desempleo

Italian: disoccupazione

German: Arbeitslosigkeit

Portuguese: desemprego

Arabic: البطالة


Thank you, Ben. So, we were talking about poverty, which can be caused by government corruption. Corruption is dishonesty and illegal behavior by people in positions of authority or power.


Corruption is a major cause of poverty considering how it affects the poor the most, eroding political and economic development, democracy and more. Corruption can be detrimental to the safety and wellbeing of citizens living within the corrupted vicinity, and can cause an increase in violence and physical threats without as much regulation in the government.


And corruption is necessary for international politics. Big countries prefer to have corrupt government officials in smaller countries because that makes it easier for them to have power over the whole country. Men who can be bought are dogs on a leash. No matter how much they bark, their leashes have limits and they never bite their masters.


Oh, you like these officials so much. I can see that.


You bet. That’s the least I can say about them.


So, corruption in English is:

French: corruption

Spanish: corrupción

Italian: corruzione

German: Korruption

Portuguese: corrupção

Arabic: فساد


Our next issue is malnourishment and hunger. If someone is malnourished, they are physically weak because they do not eat enough food or do not eat the right kind of food. So in a way, you see that most of the top ten global issues are interconnected.


That’s right. Currently there are 795 million people who do not have enough to eat. Long-term success to ending world hunger starts with ending poverty. With fighting poverty through proper training for employment, education and the teaching of cooking and gardening skills, people who are suffering will be more likely to get jobs, earn enough money to buy food and even learn how to make their own food to save money.


You see, they are all interconnected.


Yeah. Now the word we have here is malnourishment:

French: malnutrition

Spanish: desnutrición

Italian: malnutrizione

German: Unterernährung

Portuguese: desnutrição

Arabic: سوء التغذية


We just have two problems left. Let’s start with substance abuse. Substance abuse is the habit of taking too many illegal drugs, in a way that harms your health.


The United Nations reports that, by the beginning of the 21st century, an estimated 185 million people over the age of 15 were consuming drugs globally. The drugs most commonly used are marijuana, cocaine, alcohol, amphetamine stimulants, opiates and volatile solvents. Different classes of people, both poor and rich, partake in substance abuse, and it is a persistent issue throughout the world. Petitions and projects are in progress to end the global issue of substance abuse.


Unfortunately, this is an issue that is destroying the lives of our young people all around the world. This issue concerns people the most, especially when they have teenage children. Just try to stay as close as you can to your children. Keep the conversation going, so even if they make this terrible mistake, they may come to you for help before it is too late.

So, our last global problem for today is terrorism.


Terrorism is the use of violence, especially murder and bombing, in order to achieve political aims or to force a government to do something.


Terrorism is an issue throughout the world that causes fear and insecurity, violence and death. Across the globe, terrorists attack innocent people, often without warning. This makes civilians feel defenseless in their everyday lives. Making national security a higher priority is key in combating terrorism, as well as promoting justice in wrongdoings to illustrate the enforcement of the law and the serious punishments for terror crimes.


And terrorism in English is:

French: terrorisme

Spanish: terrorismo

Italian: terrorismo

German: Terrorismus

Portuguese: terrorismo

Arabic: الإرهاب


Thank you very much, Ben for helping me out in this episode. A big thanks to our listeners who keep supporting this podcast by listening to the episodes, rating the podcast and subscribing to it. That all helps this podcast continue and become stronger than ever.

We have talked this week about global problems. We started talking about natural disasters and then we moved on to talk about verbs associated with these disasters and people involved in disasters and tragedies, and in this episode, we conclude our global problems week by talking about the top ten global issues. I hope you’ve liked the theme of this week and learned a lot along the way.

Don’t forget to check the transcript of this episode and the translations into 62 languages by clicking the link you will find in the description of the episode, and you will also find in the link the interactive and downloadable activities for this week. Make sure you use these activities as they will help you remember the words better, retain them and add them to your active vocabulary.

This is Danny and Ben saying thank you very much for listening to another episode from Perfect English with Danny. We will see you again next week with a new theme and new episodes.

Episode 139 Translations into 62 Languages Part 1

Englishclimate changepollutionviolencewell beinglack
Frenchchangement climatiquela pollutionla violencebien-êtremanquer de
Italiancambiamento climaticoinquinamentoviolenzabenesseremancanza
Spanishcambio climáticocontaminaciónviolenciabienestarausencia
Portuguesedas Alterações Climáticaspoluiçãoviolênciabem-estarfalta
Korean기후 변화타락폭력웰빙결핍
Arabicتغير المناخالتلوثعنفرفاهيةقلة
albanianndryshimi i klimësndotjedhunëmirëqenienmungesë
Azerbaijaniiqlim dəyişikliyiçirklənməsizorakılıqrifahıəskiklik
Basquealdaketa klimatikoakutsaduraindarkeriaongizateaeza
Bengaliজলবায়ু পরিবর্তনদূষণহিংস্রতাভাল হচ্ছেঅভাব
Belarusianзмена кліматузабруджваннегвалтдабрабытуадсутнасць
Bulgarianизменението на климатазамърсяваненасилиеблагосъстояниелипса
Catalancanvi climàticPol · lucióviolènciabenestarfalta
Croatianklimatske promjenezagađenjenasiljeblagostanjanedostatak
Czechklimatická změnaznečištěnínásilípohodynedostatek
Danishklima forandringforureningvoldvelværemangel
Filipinopagbabago ng klimakarumihankarahasanpagiging mahusaykakulangan
Galiciancambio climáticocontaminaciónviolenciabenestarfalta
Georgianკლიმატის ცვლილებადაბინძურებისძალადობაკეთილდღეობანაკლებობა
Greekτην αλλαγή του κλίματοςρύπανσηβίαευεξίαέλλειψη
Gujaratiવાતાવરણ મા ફેરફારપ્રદૂષણહિંસાસારી હોવાઅભાવ
Haitian Creolechanjman klimatikpolisyonvyolansbyennètmank
Hebrewשינוי אקליםזיהוםאלימותורווחהחוסר
Hindiजलवायु परिवर्तनप्रदूषणहिंसाहाल चालकमी
Indonesianperubahan iklimpolusikekerasankesejahteraankekurangan
Irishathrú aeráidetruailliúforéigeana bheith go maitheaspa
Kannadaಹವಾಮಾನ ಬದಲಾವಣೆಮಾಲಿನ್ಯದಹಿಂಸಾಚಾರಯೋಗಕ್ಷೇಮದಕೊರತೆ
Latinclimate mutatiopollutioviolentiambene essecarentiam
Latvianklimata izmaiņaspiesārņojumsvardarbībalabklājībutrūkums
Lithuanianklimato kaitataršasmurtasgerovętrūkumas
Macedonianклиматска променазагадувањетонасилствоблагосостојбанедостаток
Malayperubahan iklimpencemarankeganasankesejahteraankekurangan
MalteseTibdil fil-klimatniġġisvjolenzabenesserinuqqas
NorwegianKlima forandringerforurensingvoldvelværemangel på
Persianتغییرات آب و هواالودگیخشونتتندرستیعدم
Polishzmiana klimatuzanieczyszczenieprzemocdobre samopoczuciebrak
Romanianschimbarea climeipoluareviolenţăbinelipsă
Russianизменение климатазагрязнениенасилиеблагополучияотсутствие
Serbianпромена климезагађењенасиљеблагостањенедостатак
Slovakzmena podnebiaznečistenienásiliapohodynedostatok
Sloveniansprememba podnebjaonesnaževanjenasiljedobro počutjepomanjkanje
Swahilimabadiliko ya tabianchiUchafuzivuruguustawiukosefu
Tamilபருவநிலை மாற்றம்மாசுவன்முறைநல்வாழ்வைபற்றாக்குறை
Teluguవాతావరణ మార్పుకాలుష్యంహింససంక్షేమాన్నిలేకపోవడం
Turkishiklim değişikliğikirlilikşiddetrefahıeksiklik
Ukranianзміна кліматузабрудненнянасильствоблагополуччявідсутність
Urduموسمیاتی تبدیلیآلودگیتشدداچھی طرح سے کیا جا رہا ہےفقدان
Vietnamesekhí hậu thay đổisự ô nhiễmbạo lựchạnh phúcthiếu sót
Welshnewid yn yr hinsawddllygreddtraisllesdiffyg
Yiddishקלימאַט ענדערונגפאַרפּעסטיקונגגוואַלדגעזונט וויילמאַנגל

Episode 139 Translations into 62 Languages Part 2

Englishunemploymentcorruptionmalnourishedsubstance abuseterrorism
Frenchchômagela corruptionsouffrent de malnutritionabus de substanceterrorisme
Italiandisoccupazionecorruzionemalnutritoabuso di sostanzeterrorismo
Spanishdesempleocorrupcióndesnutridosabuso de sustanciasterrorismo
Portuguesedesempregocorrupçãodesnutridasabuso de substânciasterrorismo
Korean실업부패영양 실조물질 남용테러
Arabicبطالةفساديعانون من سوء التغذيةتعاطي المخدراتإرهاب
albanianpapunësikorrupsionikequshqyerabuzim me substancaterrorizëm
Azerbaijaniişsizlikkorrupsiyaacmaddə asılılığıterrorizm
Belarusianбеспрацоўекарупцыянедаядаюцьзлоўжыванне алкаголем або наркотыкамітэрарызм
Bulgarianбезработицакорупциянедохранензлоупотребата с наркотични веществатероризъм
Catalanaturcorrupciódesnodritsabús de substànciesterrorisme
Croatiannezaposlenostkorupcijapothranjenisubstance abuseterorizam
Czechnezaměstnanostkorupcepodvyživenýzneužívání návykových látekterorismus
Esperantosenlaborecokoruptosubnutritajsubstanco misuzoterorismo
Filipinopagkawala ng trabahoKorapsyonmalnourishedinabusong sangkapterorismo
Galiciandesempregocorrupcióndesnutridasabuso de substanciasterrorismo
Georgianუმუშევრობისკორუფციაიკვებებანივთიერების ბოროტადტერორიზმის
Greekανεργίαδιαφθοράυποσιτισμένοςκατάχρηση ουσιώντρομοκρατία
Gujaratiબેરોજગારીભ્રષ્ટાચારકુપોષણવાળાપદાર્થ દુરુપયોગઆતંકવાદ
Haitian Creolechomajkoripsyonmal nouriabi sibstansteworis
Hebrewאבטלהשחיתותמתת תזונהשימוש בסמיםטרור
Hindiबेरोजगारीभ्रष्टाचारकुपोषितमादक द्रव्यों का सेवनआतंक
Indonesianpenganggurankorupsimalnutrisipenyalahgunaan zatterorisme
Irishdífhostaíochtéilliúmalnourishedmí-úsáid substaintísceimhlitheoireacht
Latinotiumcorruptiomalnourishedsubstantia abususterrorism
Latvianbezdarbskorupcijanepilnvērtīgu uzturuvielu ļaunprātīgu izmantošanuterorismu
Lithuaniannedarbaskorupcijanusilpusiųpiktnaudžiavimas medžiagaterorizmas
Macedonianневработеностакорупцијатапрегладнетизлоупотреба на супстанциитероризмот
Malaypengangguranrasuahkekurangan zat makananpenyalahgunaan dadahkeganasan
Malteseqgħadkorruzzjonimalnutritiabbuż ta ‘sustanziterroriżmu
Persianبیکاریفساددچار سوء تغذیهسوء مصرف موادتروریسم
Romanianşomajcorupţiesubnutrițiabuz de substanteterorism
Russianбезработицакоррупциянедоедаютзлоупотребление алкоголем или наркотикамитерроризм
Serbianнезапосленосткорупцијанеухрањенозлоупотреба супстанцитероризам
Slovaknezamestnanosťkorupciapodvyživenýzneužívanie návykových látokterorizmus
Slovenianbrezposelnostkorupcijapodhranjenihzloraba substancterorizem
Swahiliukosefu wa ajirarushwautapiamlovileougaidi
Tamilவேலையின்மைஊழல்ஊட்டச் சத்து குறைபாடுள்ளபொருள் தவறாகபயங்கரவாதம்
Teluguనిరుద్యోగంఅవినీతిపోషకాహారలోపాన్నిపదార్థ దుర్వినియోగంతీవ్రవాదం
Turkishişsizlikbozulmakötü beslenmişmadde bağımlılığıterörizm
Ukranianбезробіттякорупціянедоїдаютьзловживання алкоголем або наркотикамитероризм
Urduبے روزگاریکرپشنکپوشن کے شکارمادہ استعمال کی اطلاعدہشت گردی
Vietnamesethất nghiệptham nhũngsuy dinh dưỡnglạm dụng thuốcchủ nghĩa khủng bố
Welshdiweithdrallygredddioddef o ddiffyg maethcamddefnyddio sylweddauterfysgaeth
Yiddishאַרבעטלאָזיקייַטקאָרופּציעמאַלנערישטמאַטעריע זידלעןטערעריזאַם

Global Problems Interactive Activities

Global Problems Downloadable PDF Activities

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