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# Agricultural scientists have estimated that the annual loss

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Director
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Agricultural scientists have estimated that the annual loss [#permalink]

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17 Jan 2005, 13:40
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Agricultural scientists have estimated that the annual loss by erosion of arable land caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls approaches two million acres per year.

a) the annual loss by erosion of arable land caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls approaches two million acres per year
b) the erosion of heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls causes a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year
c) erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls results in a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year
d) an annual loss approaching two million acres of arable land per year results from erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls
e) annually a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year is caused by erosion due to heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls

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17 Jan 2005, 14:47
OA is not D.

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17 Jan 2005, 15:04
hmm
I posted the same one here and no explaination provided yet

http://www.gmatclub.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... highlight=

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17 Jan 2005, 17:31
Hey Gayathi & qocho1,

Can you please post the source of the question. If this question is from the test papers than I better take a break from GMAT because I am not going anywhere. I should take a break and start afresh.

I don't don't how can D not be the answer.

C as OA no way. I mean I am lost.

So please tell me the Source. I am very dissapointed.

Thanks
Saurabh Malpani

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17 Jan 2005, 18:08
Saurabh & qhoc, all the questions I posted today are from PR material I found on the web.

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17 Jan 2005, 19:24
I would go for C. Why should C not be right? E by the way has run-on sentence problem
I think D has unappropriate participial phrase location
an annual loss approaching two million acres of arable land per year results from erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls
In red is the participial phrase. The main subject here is "annual loss". It seems like it is the "annual loss" which results from the erosion. Thus, besides from being more wordy, D also has a more ambiguous comparison of subject to complement. C is shorter and more precise and would be my pick.
Erosion...results in loss of arable land approaching...
In C, the subject clearly is the cause of the loss of arable land which(the land loss) in turn approaches two million acres per year.
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18 Jan 2005, 07:15
yeah makes sense now Thanks Paul, may I barrow your brain for this exam ?

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18 Jan 2005, 07:23
Paul, Doesn't 'C' sound like they have estimated the erosion rather than the annual loss, as is intented by the original sentence.

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18 Jan 2005, 07:26
Paul wrote:
I would go for C. Why should C not be right? E by the way has run-on sentence problem
I think D has unappropriate participial phrase location
an annual loss approaching two million acres of arable land per year results from erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls
In red is the participial phrase. The main subject here is "annual loss". It seems like it is the "annual loss" which results from the erosion. Thus, besides from being more wordy, D also has a more ambiguous comparison of subject to complement. C is shorter and more precise and would be my pick.
Erosion...results in loss of arable land approaching...
In C, the subject clearly is the cause of the loss of arable land which(the land loss) in turn approaches two million acres per year.

Hey! Paul sorry to Counter question ur reasoing it's just that I am still not clear how can C be the answer. ok As per your arrgument D has unappropriate participial phrase location . Well I am not sure abt that but if you take a ook at C--->

erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls results in a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year

Don't you think C reads as if land is aaporaching 2 million.....????

What do you think?

Saurabh Malpani

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18 Jan 2005, 09:05
Well, because the participial phrase "approaching two million acres per year" cannot logically be attributed to "land", we take it for granted that it is attributed to "loss". Here are two other examples:

A pack of flies swarming the city by its sheer size
A heap of coins weighing more than one ton--> is it the coins which are(each) weighing more than 1 ton or is it the heap which IS weighing more than 1 ton?

Remember that a participial phrase does not necessarily modify the immediately preceding noun, it can modify the overal idea or group of words of the previous sentence. This concept is same than that of what relative pronouns refer to. Here is an example:

Roger did not win the election, which really surprised me--> as you can see, "which", like a participial phrase, does not necessarily refer to the immediately preceding noun
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Last edited by Paul on 18 Jan 2005, 10:37, edited 1 time in total.

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18 Jan 2005, 09:29
I was between A and C but nobody picked A
I admit C is cleaner and A is wordier but is there any big flaw in A which enables us to dump it directly ?

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18 Jan 2005, 09:39
I think A's multiple layer structure is just terrible.
loss by erosion of...caused by...
By the time you reach "approaches", you are not too sure what "approaches" anymore
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18 Jan 2005, 10:31
One more time you are right these 2 "by" are weird and you have to read the sentence a couple of times to understand it.

Thx Paul

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18 Jan 2005, 10:46
by what I see, "annual loss" and "per year" is redundant. Left with (B) and (C). Obviously, we go for (C)

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18 Jan 2005, 10:55
I did some looks up on the web, I am not sure if I fully understand Paul's point of view about participle being not next to noun. Anyway, as Saurab pointed out, I don't think we can use participle phrase to analyze this problem.

Here is my 2 cents,

erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls results in a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year

here "of arable land" is a prepositional phrase modifying noun loss.

now if you take this out all together sentence would still makes sense

erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls results in a loss approaching two million acres per year
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Last edited by praveen_rao7 on 18 Jan 2005, 11:21, edited 1 time in total.

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18 Jan 2005, 11:11
Yes, I agree with "of arable land" being a prepositional phrase modifying noun "loss".

C) erosion caused by heavy rainfall and inadequate flood controls results in a loss of arable land approaching two million acres per year

prepositional phrase
participial phrase

The issue is whether the participial phrase modifies the prepositional phrase "of arable land" or "loss". I explained this in the above as it is very possible that participial phrases do not necessarily modify the noun or phrase immediately preceding them. However, participial phrases could also, and more than often, modify nouns that immediately precede them

ie The group of lawyers believing in Christianism did not want to convert

As you can see here, the above is a typical example where the participial phrase modifies what immediately precedes it. The "group" itself cannot believe but the "lawyers" can. What I explained in the previous thread is more of an exception to the rule than common usage.
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18 Jan 2005, 11:39
C is my answer....annual loss...and then two million acres/year is redundant.
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18 Jan 2005, 12:19
qhoc0010 wrote:
by what I see, "annual loss" and "per year" is redundant. Left with (B) and (C). Obviously, we go for (C)

Absolutely qhoc and greenandwise. While I tried to substantiate why C was good, redundancy does plague the other choices. Good catch!
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18 Jan 2005, 15:21
Paul wrote:
qhoc0010 wrote:
by what I see, "annual loss" and "per year" is redundant. Left with (B) and (C). Obviously, we go for (C)

Absolutely qhoc and greenandwise. While I tried to substantiate why C was good, redundancy does plague the other choices. Good catch!

Because of the above STATED reason I will buy that C is the answer but otherwise as per sentence Construction and logical flow of sentence is concerned I still think D is better ( remove of the per yr ).

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18 Jan 2005, 15:24
[quote="that of what relative pronouns refer to. Here is an example:

Roger did not win the election, which really surprised me--> as you can see, "which", like a participial phrase, does not necessarily refer to the immediately preceding noun[/quote]

Paul don't mind but I don't think the above ELECTION sentence is correct.

Well because it's unclear wether RESULTS surprised you or ROGERS not winning surprised you moreover ETS OG tells us that WHICH can only be used to refer to the previous now not THE Phrase or IDEA.

Saurabh Malpani

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18 Jan 2005, 15:24

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