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  1. #1
    ambitious-girl's Avatar
    ambitious-girl is offline Senior Member
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    Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    If the following is the question to be answered:

    Explain some of the ways in which humans are damaging the environment. What can governments do to address these problems? What can individual people do?

    What does 'could' mean here in the answered? 1 or 2?
    1) possible actions or happenings in the future?
    2) Hypothetical situation?

    Answered: (part 2 of the question)

    Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution. They could introduce laws to limit emissions from factories or to force companies to use renewable energy from solar, wind or water power. They could also impose ‘green taxes’ on drivers and airline companies. In this way, people would be encouraged to use public transport and to take fewer flights abroad, thereby reducing emissions.
    Last edited by ambitious-girl; 02-Jun-2017 at 10:04.

  2. #2
    teechar's Avatar
    teechar is offline Moderator
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    possible actions

  3. #3
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Note that answered is a past participle. The noun you wanted in two instances was answer.
    I am not a teacher.

  4. #4
    ambitious-girl's Avatar
    ambitious-girl is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by teechar View Post
    possible actions
    So can I replace all 'could' with 'may or might'?

  5. #5
    ambitious-girl's Avatar
    ambitious-girl is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    Note that answered is a past participle. The noun you wanted in two instances was answer.
    I meant " It was answered by someone", and I just put the participle "answered" .
    Thanks.
    Last edited by ambitious-girl; 02-Jun-2017 at 15:44.

  6. #6
    teechar's Avatar
    teechar is offline Moderator
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by ambitious-girl View Post
    So can I replace all the instances of 'could' with 'may' or 'might'?
    I would stick with "could" or "can" in the above.

  7. #7
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by ambitious-girl View Post
    I meant " It was answered by someone", and I just put the participle "answered" .
    That doesn't work in English.
    I am not a teacher.

  8. #8
    andrewg927 is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by ambitious-girl View Post
    If the following is the question to be answered: (fine)

    Explain some of the ways in which humans are damaging the environment. What can governments do to address these problems? What can individual people do?

    What does 'could' mean here in the answered? 1 or 2? (wrong, should be "answer")
    1) possible actions or happenings in the future?
    2) Hypothetical situation?

    Answered: (part 2 of the question) (wrong, should be "answer")

    Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution. They could introduce laws to limit emissions from factories or to force companies to use renewable energy from solar, wind or water power. They could also impose ‘green taxes’ on drivers and airline companies. In this way, people would be encouraged to use public transport and to take fewer flights abroad, thereby reducing emissions.
    See above.

  9. #9
    Ivan2937 is offline Newbie
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    Re: Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution.

    Quote Originally Posted by ambitious-girl View Post
    If the following is the question to be answered:

    Explain some of the ways in which humans are damaging the environment. What can governments do to address these problems? What can individual people do?

    What does 'could' mean here in the answered? 1 or 2?
    1) possible actions or happenings in the future?
    2) Hypothetical situation?

    Answered: (part 2 of the question)

    Governments could certainly make more effort to reduce air pollution. They could introduce laws to limit emissions from factories or to force companies to use renewable energy from solar, wind or water power. They could also impose ‘green taxes’ on drivers and airline companies. In this way, people would be encouraged to use public transport and to take fewer flights abroad, thereby reducing emissions.
    Could is the past tense of can, and can be used as a possibility towards the future. It is more possible than MAY and might.

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