Comparative Commentary on Global Warming

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“Taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions” (“Text A”), an international newspaper advertisement from Exxon Mobil and “An Agenda for Climate Action” (Text B”), a speech by Eileen Claussen, the President of Pew Center on Global Climate Change were both written in 2006 with the focus on global warming. The author in both commentaries strives to bring out the message that as human beings, we must take action to stop the worsening of climate change. Text A is a published article by a company that emphasizes that everyone in the world should be able to take part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and that illustrates the range of actions, in particular technological advances the company has taken to address the problem. As for Text B, it is a speech delivered to university students that identifies the ultimate cause of the problems of climatic change the world is facing now. Even though the message of the two texts is the same, the way they convey it differs, in terms of the structure and content, language usage, purpose, and narrative perspective.

The structure and content of the two texts are very similar even though there are some obvious differences. First, the introduction of the two texts is very similar in terms of the message their text strives to bring out. Text A starts with “We’d like to use this space to share our thoughts on actions to address the risk of climate change” while Text B is slightly different as it opens with a courteous introduction first but what follows is this, “I am here today to talk about what climate change solutions might entail”. This clearly shows that even though the two introductions i.e. the words used and the focus area are not the exact same, but without doubts, they are intended for the same purpose, to persuade people to take action.

As for the sentencing and paragraph style, both are written in small paragraphs with long sentences, each having a specific point to make. In Text A, the 4th paragraph is about the need to develop new approaches that are suitable for consumers and to improve the present economic situation and current living standard. The 7th paragraph is about the company improving energy efficiency and having reduced a lot of emission. In Text B, the 3rd paragraph states the major cause for climate change, which is environmentally unfriendly actions done by humans. In the 5th paragraph, it talks about how the rate of mountain glaciers melting is increasing rapidly. These examples show that each paragraph from the two texts has a specific point to make and is clearly structured.

Differences can also be found due to the different nature of the texts, Text A being an international newspaper advertisement that promotes their company, Exxon Mobil while Text B is a speech by Eileen Clausen in the Yale University with the aim to raise awareness of global warming to ring the bell that everyone must come together and take a “comprehensive approach”. First, they use different ways to inform their audiences.  Text A is presented with descriptions and actual statistics of the actions the company have been taking so as to promote their company while Text B is a speech that strives to deliver the message to the audience that climate change is a serious problem, so uses more examples and easy-to-understand facts and information such as how the natural phenomenon that are occurring now is just “the tip of an iceberg”.

Second, the way they start differ. For instance, Text B starts with a sentence in the very beginning that Text A does not, which is “Thank you very much.  It is grate to be here at Yale University”. This is because Text B is a speech so it must show some kind of gratitude for being able to give out a speech. In contrary, Text A is only an advertisement, which does not need to show gratitude that way, however, it has more to do with tone. The tone of Text A is very formal and serious but not demanding because they are trying to promote their...
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