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Several industries have recently switched at least partly

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RBBmba@2014 Legendary Member Default Avatar
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Several industries have recently switched at least partly

Post Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:47 am
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  • Lap #[LAPCOUNT] ([LAPTIME])
    Several industries have recently switched at least partly from older technologies powered by fossil fuels to new technology powered by electricity. It is thus evident that less fossil fuel is being used as a result of the operations of these industries than would have been used if these industries had retained their older technologies.

    Which of the following, if true, most strengthen the argument above?

    A) Many of the industries that have switched to at least partly to new technologies have increased their output.
    B) Less fossil fuel was used to manufacture the machinery employed in the new technologies than was originally used to manufacture the machinery employed in the older technologies.
    C) More electricity is used to by those industries that have switched at least partly to the new technologies than by those industries that have not switched.
    D) Some of the industries that have switched at least partly to the new technologies still use primarily technologies that are powered by fossil fuel.
    E) The amount of fossil fuel used to generate the electricity needed to power the new technologies is less than amount that would have been used to power the older technologies.


    OA: E

    P.S: Although I got this one correct, would like to know why EXACTLY option B is wrong!
    @Verbal Experts - could you please clarify ?

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    fabiocafarelli Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts Default Avatar
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    Post Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:44 am
    Option B is wrong for the following reasons. The passage is talking about a circumstance that is a result of the operations of these industries - industries that have switched to some extent from fossil-fuel powered technologies to electricity-powered technology. The passage claims that the result in question is that less fossil fuel is being used than would have been the case had those industries continued with fossil-fuel powered technologies. Thus, we have to strengthen precisely this conclusion.

    This conclusion refers to what is happening at the moment: Present Continuous tense (passive). It is impossible to strengthen this idea by referring to the lesser amount of fossil fuel used to manufacture, at some unspecified past time, the machinery employed in those new technologies. In other words, the passage is talking about the amount of fossil fuel employed at the moment and in an ongoing scenario by the newer, electricity-powered technologies, not about the amount of fossil fuel employed in the past and in a temporary scenario in which the machinery employed by the new technologies was manufactured.

    Thus, option B simply changes the subject.

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    Post Fri May 27, 2016 10:27 pm
    There are two ways that choice B could be wrong, each of which goes along with a particular way of interpreting what the argument says.

    Here is the conclusion.

    It is thus evident that less fossil fuel is being used as a result of the operations of these industries than would have been used if these industries had retained their older technologies.

    One possible interpretation of the wording of the conclusion is what Fabio said, that the operations means the current ongoing operations of the industries.

    If you interpret the wording that way, choice B is wrong in that the manufacturing of the machinery used by the industries is not part of the current ongoing operations of the industries. So what choice B says is irrelevant to a conclusion about the ongoing operations.

    Another possible, though maybe less plausible, interpretation of wording of the conclusion is that the operations of these industries includes all aspects of the operations of the industries, including the manufacture of the equipment used by the industries.

    If you interpret the wording that way, what B says is too limited. The operations of the industries include not just the manufacturing of the equipment used but also the, likely much more energy consuming, ongoing operations. So the fact that the manufacturing of the machinery used by the industries used less fossil fuel does not do much to strengthen the conclusion that the industries now use less fossil fuel.

    While the first interpretation seems more correct than the second, even given the second interpretation choice B can be eliminated, as while it does indicate that in one very limited way less fossil fuel is used by the industries that have switched technologies, it is not nearly as clear a strengthener as choice E, which deals with a clear issue in the argument, the assumption that the generation of the electricity used by the new technologies requires less fossil fuel than was used by the older technologies.

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    RBBmba@2014 Legendary Member Default Avatar
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    Post Sun May 29, 2016 4:46 am
    Hi Marty,
    Completely agree with you...and yes, the PAST TENSE in Option B is MORE damaging (to eliminate it) than the other reason.

    Just a quick clarification reqd. --

    ARGUMENT says that older technologies are powered by fossil fuels and new technology is powered by electricity, whereas B seems to CONTRADICT this PREMISE by saying fossil fuel used in the new technologies.

    I think, we can't attack or support a PREMISE in GMAT CR. Thoughts ?

    Top Member

    Post Sun May 29, 2016 6:18 am
    RBBmba@2014 wrote:
    Hi Marty,
    Completely agree with you...and yes, the PAST TENSE in Option B is MORE damaging (to eliminate it) than the other reason.

    Just a quick clarification reqd. --

    ARGUMENT says that older technologies are powered by fossil fuels and new technology is powered by electricity, whereas B seems to CONTRADICT this PREMISE by saying fossil fuel used in the new technologies.

    I think, we can't attack or support a PREMISE in GMAT CR. Thoughts ?
    Hmm. I guess you are right about premises not being up for attack, but once again you have to be more careful about what you read. Once again there is a key difference between what an answer choice is discussing and what you are looking at in the argument.

    What you are looking at in the argument is the fact that the "new technology" is "powered by electricity".

    The argument does not say that every aspect of the operations is powered by electricity. For what it's worth, the argument actually says that the industries have "switched at least partly from older technologies powered by fossil fuels", implying that they may not have entirely switched to using the new technology.

    However, the real issue with what you said is that B does not contradict even the idea that they have switched entirely to using the new technology, as B is talking about the fossil fuels consumed not by that technology but by the manufacturing of the machinery employed in that technology.

    Details, details. You have to see the details. You get better at noticing differences, and, from what I have seen, you will score much higher in CR.

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    RBBmba@2014 Legendary Member Default Avatar
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    Post Sun May 29, 2016 10:32 pm
    Marty Murray wrote:
    RBBmba@2014 wrote:
    ARGUMENT says that older technologies are powered by fossil fuels and new technology is powered by electricity, whereas B seems to CONTRADICT this PREMISE by saying fossil fuel used in the new technologies.

    I think, we can't attack or support a PREMISE in GMAT CR. Thoughts ?
    What you are looking at in the argument is the fact that the "new technology" is "powered by electricity".

    The argument does not say that every aspect of the operations is powered by electricity. For what it's worth, the argument actually says that the industries have "switched at least partly from older technologies powered by fossil fuels", implying that they may not have entirely switched to using the new technology.

    However, the real issue with what you said is that B does not contradict even the idea that they have switched entirely to using the new technology, as B is talking about the fossil fuels consumed not by that technology but by the manufacturing of the machinery employed in that technology.
    Let me clarify a LITTLE BIT more to what I tried to say...

    First, I didn't mean COMPLETE SWITCHING from OLD to NEW Technologies.

    However, even with PARTIAL SWITCHING as mentioned in the ARGUMENT,I thought, Option B ALSO talks about the new technology as does the ARGUMENT on the same point -- "which source of FUEL the new technology is powered by ?".

    From this aspect, I concluded that B contradicts/says a different thing compared to the ARGUMENT with respect to the source of FUEL that drives the new technology because whether it's machinery manufacturing or something else, it all comes under one roof - NEW TECHNOLOGY!

    Thoughts please ?

    P.S: NOT able to identify the difference you cited as "B is talking about the fossil fuels consumed not by that technology but by the manufacturing of the machinery employed in that technology". How these two can be DIFFERENT/DISTINCT ? (TECHNOLOGY is a key ENGINEERING PROCESS - a VIRTUAL thing; it has to be through some kind of machinery. Right ?)

    P.P.S: Btw, are you trying to indicate that say, a NEW TECHNOLOGY is powered by electricity. Eventually, machinery employed in the NEW TECHNOLOGY will operate on electricity. But that doesn't necessarily mean this machinery is manufactured using electricity AS WELL -- it well could be that these machines are manufactured using FUELS other than electricity.

    Is this what you ESSENTIALLY meant ?

    Top Member

    Post Mon May 30, 2016 4:42 am
    RBBmba@2014 wrote:
    Option B ALSO talks about the new technology as does the ARGUMENT on the same point -- "which source of FUEL the new technology is powered by ?".

    From this aspect, I concluded that B contradicts/says a different thing compared to the ARGUMENT with respect to the source of FUEL that drives the new technology because whether it's machinery manufacturing or something else, it all comes under one roof - NEW TECHNOLOGY!

    P.P.S: Btw, are you trying to indicate that say, a NEW TECHNOLOGY is powered by electricity. Eventually, machinery employed in the NEW TECHNOLOGY will operate on electricity. But that doesn't necessarily mean this machinery is manufactured using electricity AS WELL -- it well could be that these machines are manufactured using FUELS other than electricity.

    Is this what you ESSENTIALLY meant ?
    YEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS, exactly.

    That's how you do it. You keep looking until you see what you have to see!

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