Wrong use of a verb form.
Wrong: *This problem is cause by insufficient support from the government.
Right: This problem is caused by insufficient support from the government.
In example 1 the passive voice requires a participle (“caused”) not a bare infinitive (“cause”).
 
In examples 2 and 3, the passive voice requires a participle (“reduced”, “affected”) not a gerund (“reducing”, “affecting”).
 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

1.

At the same time,the pollution around the Victoria Harbour has also increased, especially the air pollution, which is mainly cause by the cars near the roads.

At the same time,the pollution around the Victoria Harbour has also increased, especially the air pollution, which is mainly caused by the cars near the roads.

2.

As the width of the harbor districts is reducing, the wind and tidal flow aggravates the air and water quality.

As the width of the harbor districts is reduced, the wind and tidal flow aggravates the air and water quality.

3.

The beautiful harbor scenery is affecting by the narrowed harbor with dense buildings around.

The beautiful harbor scenery is affected by the narrowed harbor with dense buildings around.

 

In example 4, the use of infinitive implies that the government built many skyscrapers ON PURPOSE, IN ORDER TO block the view. By using “blocking” instead of “to block”, the relationship between the two clauses is that of “cause and effect” not “purpose”.
 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

4.

The government built many skyscrapers besides the beautiful harbor to block the view and built a modern
shopping mall next to a traditional temple.

The government built many skyscrapers besides the beautiful harbor blocking the view and built a modern shopping mall next to a traditional temple.

 

In example 5, the use of present perfect tense requires a participle (“existed”), not a gerund (“existing”).
 
In example 6, the present perfect tense is needed but the combination of “has/have” and the simple past tense (i.e. “became”) is used. The past participle form “become” should be used instead.
 
In example 7, the use of present perfect tense requires a participle (“studied”), not a gerund (“studying”).
  

 

WRONG
RIGHT

5.

Hong Kong’s land problem has existing for a long period of time.

Hong Kong’s land problem has existed for a long period of time.

6.

Therefore the adverse effect on marine organisms has became more serious.

Therefore the adverse effect on marine organisms has become more serious.

7.

I have studying a course on 3D software in which I learned the skills and knowledge related to the design of 3D products.

I have studied a course on 3D software in which I learned the skills and knowledge related to the design of 3D products.

 
In example 8, as “compare” is a transitive verb, we need to mention the object (“comparing Hong Kong […]”). Alternatively, we can use the passive voice (“compared with other harbour cities […]”).
 
 
WRONG
RIGHT

8.

However, comparing with other “harbour
cities”, the development of the Hong Kong harbour is not satisfactory because of three major problems […]

However, compared with other “harbour cities”, the development of the Hong Kong harbour is not satisfactory because of three major problems […]

However, comparing Hong Kong with other “harbour cities”, the development of the Hong Kong harbour is not satisfactory because of three major problems […]

 

In example 9, there are two main verbs (i.e. “allows”, “anchoring”) describing two actions by the subject in one sentence, which is inappropriate. If we say “it allows the vessels to anchor”, the infinitive form (“to anchor”) refers to “the vessels” not to “it”.
 
In example 10, the to-infinitive (i.e. “to develop”) is incorrectly expressed in the “to-gerund” form (i.e. to developing).
 
In example 11, after “in spite of”, instead of a sentence (“the banks of the Singapore River are lined with luxury hotels”), we should use a noun phrase. The non-finite gerund form (“being”) effectively turns a verb into a noun (“the banks of the Singapore River being lined with luxury hotels”).
 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

9.

It allows the vessels anchoring in the harbour.

It allows the vessels to anchor in the harbour.

10.

The cause of this is because the Hong Kong harbour does not have enough space to developing new buildings and facilities.

The cause of this is because the Hong Kong harbour does not have enough space to develop new buildings and facilities.

11.

Today, in spite of the banks of the Singapore River are lined with luxury hotels, eateries and shops, upmarket and glamorous buildings as well as the financial centres, riverine life has been restored to a large extent.

Today, in spite of the banks of the Singapore River being lined with luxury hotels, eateries and shops, upmarket and glamorous buildings as well as the financial centresriverine life has been restored to a large extent.

 

In example 12, “hide” is an irregular verb, and its past simple form is “hid’, not “hided”.
 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

12.

However, the Hong Kong government insisted on its decision in building the central highway and commercial building near the harbour through reclamation, and hided up the report by the historical
preservation department from the public.

However, the Hong Kong government insisted on its decision in building the central highway and commercial building near the harbour through reclamation, and hid the report by the historical preservation department from the public.

 

In example 13, the sentence “the problems behind that including pollution, urban planning, social harmony, view, and natural habitat” lacks a main verb, because “including” is a non-finite verb, a gerund form in this case.
 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

13.

To sum up, the development of Victoria Harbour is not satisfactory, and the problems behind that including pollution, urban planning, social harmony, view, and natural habitat.

To sum up, the development of Victoria Harbour is not satisfactory, and the problems behind that include pollution, urban planning, social harmony, view, and natural habitat.

 
“Help” is a special verb that is followed by bare infinitives or to-infinitives. In examples 14 and 15, the -ing form of the verbs (i.e. catching) is used when the bare infinitive form (i.e. catch, support) or to-infinitive form (i.e. to catch, to support ) is needed. 

 

WRONG
RIGHT

14.

My past work experience may help me catching up easily in the new workplace.

My past work experience may help me catch up easily in the new workplace. 

My past work experience may help me to catch up easily in the new workplace.

15.

My knowledge and skills would help me supporting the rapid growth of your company.

My knowledge and skills would help me support the rapid growth of your company. 

My knowledge and skills would help me to support the rapid growth of your company.

Lack VS. A/ The lack of

“Lack” is a verb and “lack of something” is a complex noun phrase.
 
In example 16, the verb “lack” should be followed by a noun phrase as an object. A prepositional phrase “of facilities […]” can never be an object. One alternative solution could be to use the noun phrase “lack of” by saying “there is a lack of […]”.
 
WRONG
RIGHT

16.

Poor urban planning impedes the development of Hong Kong. The city lacks of facilities like parks, recreation areas and waterfront promenades to name but a few.

Poor urban planning impedes the development of Hong Kong. The city lacks ø facilities like parks, recreation areas and waterfront promenades to name but a few.

 

Poor urban planning impedes the development of Hong Kong. There is a lack of facilities like parks, recreation areas and waterfront promenades in the city, to name but a few.

 

See more.

Click here for a quiz on verb forms.

Raise your question