Today I will give you a sample answer for an IELTS Writing Task 2 question about the environment:

Some people claim that not enough of the waste from homes is recycled. They say that the only way to increase recycling is for governments to make it a legal requirement.

To what extent do you think laws are needed to make people recycle more of their waste?

I think this is a pretty interesting question, and yet a little difficult to answer. I have taken the position that I agree with legal requirements for recycling, and attempted to justify my stance in two paragraphs. I have marked some useful vocabulary for this issue, or for general arguments.

All around the world, people are producing more and more waste because of increasing standards of living. This is a potential environmental catastrophe, but it can be mitigated by a number of steps, including recycling. In some countries, governments have made recycling a legal requirement, and I wholeheartedly endorse this position.

While it is important that a government gives its citizens freedom, it is clear that people are simply not taking responsibility for their actions in regards waste. Efforts to gently encourage people to recycle have failed for various reasons. There are numerous incentives that can be put in place, but these don’t guarantee people’s co-operation and can be costly for governments. However, a stiff punishment acts as a suitable deterrent and will see many people, who otherwise would ignore incentives and suggestions, fall in line with the government’s position.

Furthermore, the importance of our earth’s future is simply too great to be placed in the hands of average people. The common citizen has too many worries in their daily life, and cannot reasonably be expected to willingly devote their time and energy to recycling. Although it may seem harsh to make it a legal requirement, this ensures everyone’s future. In the end, it is preferable for a few people to be punished than for everyone to suffer the disasters associated with environmental degradation.

In conclusion, I believe that it is justifiable for governments to implement laws mandating recycling by all citizens, even though on the surface it may appear like a draconic measure.

What do you think? Post your answers below.