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The Earth s rivers constantly carry dissolved salts into its

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The Earth s rivers constantly carry dissolved salts into its [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 15:53
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The Earth’s rivers constantly carry dissolved salts into its oceans. Clearly, therefore, by taking the resulting increase in salt levels in the oceans over the past hundred years and then determining how many centuries of such increases it would have taken the oceans to reach current salt levels from a hypothetical initial salt-free state, the maximum age of the Earth’s oceans can be accurately estimated.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. The quantities of dissolved salts deposited by rivers in the Earth’s oceans have not been unusually large during the past hundred years.
B. At any given time, all the Earth’s rivers have about the same salt levels.
C. There are salts that leach into the Earth’s oceans directly from the ocean floor.
D. There is no method superior to that based on salt levels for estimating the maximum age of the Earth’s oceans.
E. None of the salts carried into the Earth’s oceans by rivers are used up by biological activity in the oceans.
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 [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 23:06
E. Sates that all the salt in the ocean is 'AS IS' - no loss of salt whatsoever. If we negate this then the age prediction will have incorrect data.
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 [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 23:09
C. There are salts that leach into the Earth’s oceans directly from the ocean floor.
- This is the assumption. Salts are assumed to come all from rivers and no where else.
c for me.
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Re: CR: Ocean Age [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 23:14
marine wrote:
The Earth’s rivers constantly carry dissolved salts into its oceans. Clearly, therefore, by taking the resulting increase in salt levels in the oceans over the past hundred years and then determining how many centuries of such increases it would have taken the oceans to reach current salt levels from a hypothetical initial salt-free state, the maximum age of the Earth’s oceans can be accurately estimated.

Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?

A. The quantities of dissolved salts deposited by rivers in the Earth’s oceans have not been unusually large during the past hundred years.
B. At any given time, all the Earth’s rivers have about the same salt levels.
C. There are salts that leach into the Earth’s oceans directly from the ocean floor.
D. There is no method superior to that based on salt levels for estimating the maximum age of the Earth’s oceans.
E. None of the salts carried into the Earth’s oceans by rivers are used up by biological activity in the oceans.


C. weakens. If this were the case, the argument is definitely flawed cause there is another salt source. We need to something that says...there is no other salt eroder or source.
E. is a required assumption....sorta
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 [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 23:21
I meant to give B as the answer (wrote A by mistake)
B becos only if the rivers keep carrying the same amount of salt each century will the amt deposited into the sea be the same each century and therefore by knowing how mch the sea has today versus salt addition in 100 yrs author says we can say sea is 100x old. ..but chances are in one century rivers deposited hardly any salt etc etc..
not sure about bio activity..chances are that bio activity reduces salt content by the same amount each century...
is e the OA?
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 [#permalink] New post 23 Sep 2004, 23:24
E it is...
I got it now, increase is the keyword
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 [#permalink] New post 24 Sep 2004, 07:08
OA is E
  [#permalink] 24 Sep 2004, 07:08
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