Sunday, March 6, 2016



Today, we were going on a school trip to the Adalaj stepwell (baoli ), about eighteen kilometres from Ahmedabad. We began counting the vehicles on the road.

Some of us counted the bicycles, others counted the buses, cars, and motorcycles. Abraham, who was counting bicycles, soon got bored. There were hardly any bicycles on this highway.

Screeeech! The driver suddenly braked at the red light. It was a big
crossing, and we could see the traffic lined up on all sides. Honk, honk,
the sound of loud horns, and smoke coming out of the vehicles! May be that is why a little boy in a rickshaw was coughing so much.

I smelt something, familiar. I remembered this smell – it came from Baba’s tractor in the village.

After sometime our bus stopped at a petrol pump. There was a long queue. It seemed as if we would have a long wait. We all got down from the bus and started looking around the petrol pump. We saw many large boards and posters.

Petrol and diesel will not last forever. Save it for your children.
• Make every drop go a long way.
• Switch off the engine when you stop the car.

We could not understand why it was written that petrol and diesel will not last forever. We thought of asking an uncle who works at the petrol pump.

Abraham : Uncle, from where do we get petrol and diesel?
Uncle (who works at the petrol pump) : From deep, deep down under the ground.
Manju : But how does it get made there?
Uncle: It is formed naturally, but very slowly. It is not made by a human being or a machine.
Abraham : Then we don't need to buy it. We can take it out ourselves using a borewell, like we pump out water!
Uncle : It is not found everywhere, but only at a few places in
our country. We need big machines to pump it out and clean it.
Petrol: Rs 47.74 per litre
Diesel: Rs 35.21 per litre

Divya : Is petrol going to finish? The poster said that petrol is not going to last forever.
Uncle : It does not get made as fast as we take it out. It takes lakhs of
years for it to be formed under the earth.
Abraham : How will vehicles run if the oil finishes?
Manju : On CNG. I had seen on TV that vehicles which run on CNG
give less smoke.
Uncle (laughing) : That too comes from below the earth. It is also
Divya : Electricity can be used to run vehicles. I have seen an electric bicycle.

Abraham : We will have to do something. Or else, how will we travel
when we grow up?
Divya : If fewer vehicles run on the road my dadi (grandmother) would be happy. She says, “Look! vehicles line up like ants. What
will you do when you grow up?”
Manju : See, only one or two people are sitting in these cars. Why
doesn’t everyone use a bus?
Abraham : That will save petrol. One bus can carry many people.
Manju : When I grow up I will invent a car that runs on sunlight.
Then we won't have to worry about it getting finished. We can use
it as much as we want!


It is not easy to find out where oil is, deep down below the earth. Scientists use special techniques and machines to find this out. Then through pipes and machines petroleum is pumped up.

 This oil is a smelly, thick, dark coloured liquid. It contains many things mixed in it. To clean and separate these, it is sent to a refinery. Have you
heard of a ‘refinery’?

It is from this ‘petroleum’ or oil that we get kerosene, diesel, petrol, engine oil and fuel for aircrafts. Do you know that L.P.G. (cooking gas), wax, coaltar and grease are also obtained from this? It is also used in making several other things like plastics and paints.

I started thinking about saving oil. I remembered that sometimes Baba keeps the engine of the tractor on, while doing something else. At times, the pump in the field is also left on. How much oil would be going waste! I thought I will surely talk to Baba when I get home.

Durga lives in a village in Haryana. Everyday she spends many hours collecting wood for the chulha (stove). Her daughter also has to help her in this.

For the past three months she has a cough. There is a lot of smoke when damp wood is burnt. But Durga does not have any other option. When there is not enough money to buy food, where will there be money to buy wood?

Today, about two-third (2/3) people in our country use uple, wood and dry twigs, etc. These are used not only for cooking food but also for keeping warm, for heating water and for lighting. Many other things are used for all activities at home – kerosene, LPG, coal, electricity, etc.

Kancha had seen a bar chart in a book. The chart shows the number of houses out of 100 that use each type of fuel. It also shows the use of which fuel has increased and which fuel has decreased over the past twenty years.

In year 1976, out of 100 how many houses used uple and wood?
Which was the fuel used the least in 1976?

– In 1976, LPG and kerosene were used in______houses and in 1996
this increased to______. This means that in twenty years their use
increased by________%. Year 1976.



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