ニュースで学ぶ現代英語 24/2/12(月) “人類最後の日まで１分３０秒”
DOOMSDAY CLOCK MARKS ‘UNSTABLE’ WORLD
Doomsday clock marks ‘unstable’ world
Scientists say the spread of conflicts has left the world “profoundly unstable.” So they’ve kept what’s known as the Doomsday Clock at 90 seconds to midnight.
Atomic scientists, including Albert Einstein and J. Robert Oppenheimer, wanted to warn people of the threats of nuclear weapons. They created this metaphor for how close humanity is to self-annihilation.
Last year, the group cited “unprecedented danger” from the war in Ukraine, with Russian leaders threatening to use nuclear arms. They signaled the world was the closest it’s ever been to catastrophe – just 90 seconds away.
They say the level of risk hasn’t changed. But they point to other “potential nuclear crises,” including one stemming from authorities in North Korea. They also say the fighting between Israel and Hamas has the potential to escalate into a “broader conflict.”
ニュースで学ぶ現代英語 24/2/13(火) 外国人労働者 ２００万人超える
NUMBER OF FOREIGN WORKERS IN JAPAN TOPS 2 MIL.
Number of foreign workers in Japan tops 2 Mil.
The number of foreign workers here in Japan exceeded 2 million last year for the first time ever.
The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare says as of the end of October there were nearly 2.05 million registered foreign workers. That’s an increase of more than 12.4 percent from the previous year. The figure marked a record high for the 11th straight year.
Breaking it down, Vietnamese workers topped the list at more than half a million, followed by workers from China and the Philippines.
In terms of residency status, about 30 percent were people of Japanese descent or spouses of Japanese nationals. Another 30 percent were skilled professionals, such as engineers and researchers. Technical trainees accounted for about 20 percent.
Officials say the growth in the number of foreign workers is high in sectors said to be facing labor shortages, including construction and healthcare. They say the overall rate of growth is now recovering to pre-pandemic levels.
ニュースで学ぶ現代英語 24/2/14(水) 今年のバレンタイン商戦は“イートイン”
TOKYO STORES SWEETEN POST-COVID VALENTINE’S DAY
Tokyo stores sweeten post-covid Valentine’s Day
Boutique chocolates are lining department store showcases around Japan as Valentine’s Day nears. This year, some retailers are offering pop-up serving areas so buyers can enjoy treats on the premises.
The Seibu Ikebukuro department store in Tokyo is using its area to offer drinks that use cocoa husk. The so-called “eat-in” service is being introduced for the first Valentine’s Day season since COVID restrictions were fully removed.
The Shinjuku Takashimaya department store has a section where Japanese and French specialists prepare chocolate desserts on the spot. Customers can enjoy the deluxe sweets with a drink and take home a souvenir. Bookings are required for the service. It’s priced from around 30 dollars. A representative said many customers indulge in the service.
ニュースで学ぶ現代英語 24/2/15(木) 無人探査機ＳＬＩＭの月面活動“復活”
JAXA: COMMUNICATION WITH LUNAR PROBE RESTORED
Jaxa: communication with lunar probe restored
Japan’s space agency says it has successfully re-established communication with its lunar surface probe. Officials had earlier shut down power on the Smart Lander for Investigating Moon, or SLIM, as its solar panel wasn’t working.
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, posted on social media on Monday that communication with the probe had been established and operations resumed. JAXA successfully landed the probe on the moon on January 20, making Japan the fifth country to accomplish the feat.
Officials later said they had landed the probe with “pinpoint” accuracy. They said it touched down about 55 meters from its target. Landing within 100 meters of the target is a world first. But SLIM was not generating electricity initially because the solar panel array was not in the right position to receive sunlight.
ニュースで学ぶ現代英語 24/2/16(金) “こんにゃくでマグロの刺身”を再現
FOOD MAKER DEVELOPS PLANT-BASED ‘TUNA’ TO PRESERVE OCEAN RESOURCES
Food maker develops plant-based ‘tuna’ to preserve ocean resources
A Japanese food maker has developed what it calls “alternative tuna” from plant-based ingredients. The company says the product could help in sustaining tuna stocks in the ocean. The fish is extremely popular in Japan.
NH Foods says the product is made with a yam-based powder and other ingredients. The company says it spent six months testing and developing the product’s flavor and texture to resemble the fish. It plans to market the alternative tuna to businesses from April.
It has also developed plant-based ramen noodle soup that recreates the flavor of pork-bone broth and Korean-style beef sandwiches with soybean meat.
Research firm Fuji Keizai estimates the global market for alternative food products will expand to 44 billion dollars by 2030, about four times bigger than in 2022.