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At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most

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At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 21 Oct 2018, 23:54
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Which of the following best completes the passage below?

At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality of effluents, whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that _______.


(A) any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay

(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage

(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents

(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present

(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible

Verbal Question of The Day: Day 176: Critical Reasoning


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This question might seem very elementary, but I have a slight problem with it. The OA is (B). It is logical, but I'm not sure why (B) is really required if the countries are not bothered whether or not specific damage can be attributed to a particular effluent. Shouldn't (D) perhaps be an option?

Originally posted by sandipan.mondal on 09 Oct 2007, 02:06.
Last edited by Bunuel on 21 Oct 2018, 23:54, edited 8 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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New post 19 Jan 2012, 14:58
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For answer choice (D), imagine Germany has been dumping mercury into its rivers, mercury which eventually reaches the North Sea.

(D) is saying that it is important that all of the mercury reach the North Sea. If mercury causes environmental damage, then it doesn't matter whether all of it reaches the North Sea. The mercury is causing damage. Therefore we can eliminate (D) based on the word 'all.'

Now let's say, Germany dumps a lot of oxidimide (just made that up) into its river. A uniform control on oxidimide would only make sense if oxidimide is shown to cause environmental damage. This is what (B) is saying - that a substance should only be subject to strict controls if it has been shown to cause environmental damage.

Hope that helps!
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Re: At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2017, 00:40
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A conference was held to address environmental threats to the North Sea. Even if you don't know the meaning of the word "effluent", from the context you should be able to infer that it is some type of waste that could potentially harm the sea.

The countries participating in the conference favor uniform controls (or restrictions) on the quality of those effluents. The issue is that they aren't sure which sources of effluents actually cause environmental damage. As a result, they might end up restricting sources that DON'T actually cause any environmental damage. Such a restriction would be excessive, since it would involve controlling substances that are not actually threats to the sea. If they could somehow only control the HARMFUL effluents, then the controls could not be considered excessively restrictive.

With that in mind, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, it must be shown that...

Quote:
(A) any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay

We aren't concerned with the timing of the controls. Rather, we care about the controls' being excessively restrictive. The schedule of the controls has nothing to do with how restrictive they are, so (A) can be eliminated.

Quote:
(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage

As described above, controls on substances that are not actually harmful would be considered excessive. If we can show that any substance subject to the controls actually CAN cause environmental damage, then we would show that we are not restricting harmless substances. This would eliminate the concern about excessively restrictive controls, so choice (B) looks pretty good.

Quote:
(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents

The countries generating the largest quantities of effluents may NOT favor the controls. So what? Whether those countries like the controls doesn't tell us whether the controls restrict harmless substances. Thus, regardless of whether this statement is true, the controls may or may not be excessively restrictive. Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present

The word "all" should be a red flag. What if only MOST or SOME of a given pollutant actually reaches the North Sea? Would controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not. Furthermore, if an effluent is known to be an environmental threat, it might make sense to implement controls to ensure it doesn't harm the North Sea in the future. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible

Even if the present damage is irreversible, we would still want to limit FURTHER damage by implementing the controls. Controls on harmful substances would not be excessively restrictive even if they only succeed in keeping the damage at the current level. Choice (E) is thus irrelevant and can be eliminated.

(B) is the best answer.
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New post 14 May 2013, 09:05
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Argument:
Most participants favoured uniform controls on the quality on effluents in conference on environmental threats to the North Sea. This irrespective of the fact whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent.

Pre thinking:
Most participants wants the quality control will happen on all effluents irrespective of the fact whether any environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. So to avoid excessively restrictive controls only those effluents which cause environmental damage should be controlled.

Analysis of answer Choices:

(A) Any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay
Incorrect: Irrelevant as talks about delay and not excessively restrictive controls.

(B) Any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage
Correct: this will make sure that only those substances which damage environment will be subjected to control thus preventing control on effluents which are not damaging to environment.

(C) the countries favouring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents
Incorrect: Irrelevant .No relation with effluent causing damage and excessively restrictive controls.

(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present
Incorrect: pollutant damaging North Sea is the problem even if not all of it reached the sea.

(E) Environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible
Incorrect: Irrelevant. Argument is about managing the effluent to prevent any environmental damage in future.
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New post 03 Jul 2011, 11:51
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What must, of course, be shown, in order to mitigate the risk of excessively restrictive controls, is that ____________________

The question makes it clear that most participants are in favour of passing restrictive control measures. Also the premise states "Such controls were overwhelmingly supported without regard to whether or not specific environmental damage could be linked to a particular type of food being used." This statement can be rephrased to mean that it doesn't matters which food type causes which kind of problem, any food which causes any kind of eneviromental damage should be restricted. now the question is concerned about risk of too much of restrictive control , so only that choice which talks about lessening the risk of excessive control should be the answer.

a) Doesn't address the issue which passage asks.

b) Correct . - Rephrased this option says that only the foods which do cause environmental damage should be put under control. foods which don't cause problems should not be. Hence this is the right answer because it asks to completely avoid non-enviroment damaging foods to be put under restriction.

c) is not related with what we are concerned.

d) The tricky answer choice. "all of the chemicals that are ingredients in some of the controlled substances are known to cause environmental damage". we are not concerned with only some of the controlled substances but all of them.

e) This is a pessimistic choice that essentially states that damage already caused cannot be reversed. The premise and question stem is concerned about mitigating the risk of excessive control , not about saying that what has happened has happened. It asks about what can be done and not what cannot be done.
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Re: At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Sep 2011, 03:20
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I had a unique issue with this question. I assumed that 'What must, of course, be shown' implied that the reader/I needed to find a reason (negative assumption) that will make the countries to avoid excessively resistive controls. B and D are irrelevant with this angle. Hence, I went with C as the closest.

Only after reading the explanation, realized that it is a suggestion (a guideline) for the process so as to avoid excessively resistive controls.. B clearly wins ( probably that's why the 'of course' was included in the question)

I still feel there are two angles (author's and reader's) to understand this question. Not sure why I should choose one over the other.
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New post 09 Feb 2012, 17:03
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(D) is wrong because what is at issue is whether any effluents are actually causing damage to the environment in the first place. (D) is focused on whether ALL of one effluent actually reaching the North Sea. That point is not that important.

Even if only half of an effluent makes it to the North Sea, if that effluent is toxic it is still causing damage and should thus be controlled.
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sandipan.mondal wrote:
At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality on effluents, whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that______

(A) Any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay
(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage
(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents
(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present
(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible


This question might seem very elementary, but I have a slight problem with it. The OA is (B). It is logical, but I'm not sure why (B) is really required if the countries are not bothered whether or not specific damage can be attributed to a particular effluent. Shouldn't (D) perhaps be an option?


Now what makes the author say this: "What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that".

It is because of this:most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality on effluents, whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent.

The "whether or not" in the above suggests that the controls could be excessive.

So to avoid the excessive controls we need to show that "any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage" which is choice B.
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New post 08 Sep 2015, 01:58
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Question is asking us "What will remove drawback "Excessive Restriction" from the plan "Restricting effluents to save north sea"

Argument :
Nation agrees - Block everything (Effluent) from entering north sea, irrespective of the nature (Whether harmful or harmless) of effluents.


Let's take some real life example.
To decrease deaths due to road accident , Stop every vehicle on road. :P , Now if i ask one what is your reaction to this, he/she will say "police intention is good but it may bring trouble to innocent people. Police should stop only heavy/harmful vehicle"

Exactly in same line we need to think. We need to find option, which can remove drawback from plan


POE.
(A) any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay

That can be deployed, but it will not avoid excessive restriction.

(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage

Yes, if they don't damage and still if nation blocks then it will be consider as excessive restriction. (Same as we thought above) - Make sense - Keep it aside.

(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents

That is Ok, Nations need to save north sea, irrespective of the share of pollution of each nation - Out of scope

(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present

we need to think what will impact once plan is implemented - out of scope

(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible

if it is reversible, then probably we dont this restriction. So it does not answer the question in plate.
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New post 12 Dec 2017, 05:22
At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality of effluents, whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that _______.

(A) any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay - Irrelevent

(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage - Correct

(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents - Irrelevent

(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present
- does not matter if 'all' of the pollutant reaches --even some can cause damage (depending on how much was released)

(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible - Irrelevent
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New post 20 Dec 2017, 14:18

Here is an official explanation from OG.



How can excessively restrictive controls be avoided? To prevent pollutants from entering the North Sea, countries decide to control the quality of effluents. They need to control only those effluents that cause environmental damage. There is no need to restrict harmless effluents.


A The immediacy of adopting controls does not prevent the controls from being overly restrictive.

B Correct. This statement properly identifies the fact that controls on harmless effluents would be excessively restrictive and so should be avoided.

C Avoiding unnecessary restrictions involves analyzing the quality of the effluents, not the composition of the countries favoring the restrictions.

D It is not necessary to prove that all of a pollutant reaches the North Sea. It is necessary to prove only that some of it does.

E is out of scope.
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New post 08 Apr 2018, 06:28
GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present

The word "all" should be a red flag. What if only MOST or SOME of a given pollutant actually reaches the North Sea? Would controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not. Furthermore, if an effluent is known to be an environmental threat, it might make sense to implement controls to ensure it doesn't harm the North Sea in the future. Eliminate (D).


Hi GMATNinja , GMATNinjaTwo
Would you please confirm my interpretation?
GMATNinja wrote:
The word "all" should be a red flag. What if only MOST or SOME of a given pollutant actually reaches the North Sea?

Do you mean you negate choice D?
because some of a given pollutant actually reaches to the North Sea, So does it equally say some of a given pollutant actually does NOT reaches the North Sea?

Then consider that whether argument fall apart if negate D,
as you mentioned above:
GMATNinja wrote:
Would controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not.


Did i miss something?

I think it is hard for me to consider whether controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not.
Rather, it will be easier for me to onsider whether controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it does reach the North Sea? -- the answer is NOT exceed, because loss control, or not strict control, some polutant reaches the orth Sea,
so negative D will loss control, the opposite of exceed control,
Then D is correct,
Here is my reasoning, I know i am incorrect, but i don't know where, please point out.

Genuinely want your help, Please~~~

thanks in advance

Have a nice day
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Re: At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Apr 2018, 09:50
zoezhuyan wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
Quote:
(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present

The word "all" should be a red flag. What if only MOST or SOME of a given pollutant actually reaches the North Sea? Would controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not. Furthermore, if an effluent is known to be an environmental threat, it might make sense to implement controls to ensure it doesn't harm the North Sea in the future. Eliminate (D).


Hi GMATNinja , GMATNinjaTwo
Would you please confirm my interpretation?
GMATNinja wrote:
The word "all" should be a red flag. What if only MOST or SOME of a given pollutant actually reaches the North Sea?

Do you mean you negate choice D?
because some of a given pollutant actually reaches to the North Sea, So does it equally say some of a given pollutant actually does NOT reaches the North Sea?

Then consider that whether argument fall apart if negate D,
as you mentioned above:
GMATNinja wrote:
Would controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not.


Did i miss something?

I think it is hard for me to consider whether controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it doesn't reach the North Sea? Of course not.
Rather, it will be easier for me to onsider whether controlling that substance be excessively restrictive just because SOME of it does reach the North Sea? -- the answer is NOT exceed, because loss control, or not strict control, some polutant reaches the orth Sea,
so negative D will loss control, the opposite of exceed control,
Then D is correct,
Here is my reasoning, I know i am incorrect, but i don't know where, please point out.

Genuinely want your help, Please~~~

thanks in advance

Have a nice day
>_~

zoezhuyan, please understand that we experts receive numerous requests for help each day, and, while we do our best to respond in a timely manner, we cannot get to everyone -- so I apologize for not being able to answer absolutely every question you've asked lately. Check out this thoughtful post by mikemcgarry for another perspective.

As for this question, I'm afraid I don't quite understand your reasoning, but let me try to help anyway....

Let's say that a factory generates a waste product called Chemical X. Chemical X is very bad for the environment. If (D) were the answer, then any controls on Chemical X would be excessively restricted UNLESS 100% of the Chemical X actually reaches the North Sea.

In that case, what if 90% of the Chemical X reaches the North Sea? If we go with choice (D), then controlling Chemical X would be "excessively restrictive." But that doesn't make sense... if 90% of Chemical X reaches the North Sea and that chemical is very bad for the environment, then controlling that substance would be reasonable, not excessively restrictive.

In other words, if (D) were the answer, we could have the following logic:

  • 99% of the Chemical X produced by the factory reaches the North Sea.
  • We try to implement controls on Chemical X.
  • The factory says, "Well, SOME of the Chemical X (i.e. the 1%) doesn't actually reach the North Sea, so the controls are excessive!"

We do NOT need to show that ALL of the waste actually reaches the North Sea. As long as an amount significant enough to harm the environment reaches the North Sea, then the controls are justifiable.

I hope that helps!
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New post 17 Apr 2018, 03:41
I am unable to fully comprehend the language of option B. I get confused by following 2 meanings:
a) Any substance which has to be made, if subjected to controls, will cause damage
OR
b) All substances to be made that are subject to controls, cause damage.
Please grammatically comprehend the option B
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New post 19 Apr 2018, 09:25
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gmatacer40 wrote:
I am unable to fully comprehend the language of option B. I get confused by following 2 meanings:
a) Any substance which has to be made, if subjected to controls, will cause damage
OR
b) All substances to be made that are subject to controls, cause damage.
Please grammatically comprehend the option B

I think you are on the right track with your second explanation. Let's say that controls are placed on 10 different substances. According to choice (B), we must be able to show that all ten can actually cause environmental damage.

If we want to add a substance to that list, we must be able to show that it can actually cause environmental damage. In other words, ANY substance that we want to add to the list must pass that test.

I hope that helps!
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New post 02 Jun 2018, 16:49
At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, ----------->There are some environmental threats to the North Sea
most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality of effluents, ------> reduce these threats by controls on the quality of effluents
whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. ------------> No need to map specific environmental damage to a particular source of effluent.

Required:-
What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that _______.

Pre-thinking: Are there some reasons other than quality of effluents having an enviornmental threat to the North sea?

Elimination of wrong and selection of correct answer choice:-
Option (B) gives that other reason - any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage!
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New post 29 Jun 2019, 11:30
I think that the most difficult part of this question for people is actually understanding the question stem, not finding 4 wrongs answers. While I chose the correct response, it took me just over 2mins 30second, and I want to take a few minutes here to reflect on why it took me so long because I think it'll be helpful for others.

Quote:
Which of the following best completes the passage below?

At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most participating countries favored uniform controls on the quality of effluents, whether or not specific environmental damage could be attributed to a particular source of effluent. What must, of course, be shown, in order to avoid excessively restrictive controls, is that _______.

(A) any uniform controls that are adopted are likely to be implemented without delay
(B) any substance to be made subject to controls can actually cause environmental damage
(C) the countries favoring uniform controls are those generating the largest quantities of effluents
(D) all of any given pollutant that is to be controlled actually reaches the North Sea at present
(E) environmental damage already inflicted on the North Sea is reversible

I think the portion that I've highlighted in green is not the easiest thing to quickly rephrase. For me, when I read the words "quality of effluents" I raised my brow slightly. I understand what 'uniform controls' means, but the 'quality of effluents' was, in my opinion, unnecessarily wordy, and therefore difficult to understand. If I rephrase the green color portion of the passage as "people favored restrictions on all pollutants, whether or not they could inflict environmental damage", then it becomes demonstrably easier to both understand and pre-think. As soon as I did this, answer choice (B) became incredibly clear to me. My point is though, it was difficult for me to see the logic because I didn't understand the wording well.

Rephrasing in this way allowed me to find 4 wrong answers very quickly; however, I became lost in the answer choices without being able to rephrase the stem in clear concrete terms.

Hopefully that helps someone!
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Re: At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Feb 2020, 12:30
Selected D because i read it as "all of the pollutants to be controlled actually enter the North Sea" & not "literally all of the pollutant must enter the red sea to be on the ban list".
Need to read more carefully.

That said, B then becomes the next best answer. I do think that my initially incorrect framing of D would have been a better answer it not only presumes the items listed are actually pollutant, but also actually reach the North sea.
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Re: At a recent conference on environmental threats to the North Sea, most   [#permalink] 14 Feb 2020, 12:30
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