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Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering

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Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 13 Feb 2019, 04:41
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Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering have been shown to have elevated levels of various toxic substances circulating through the air inside, a phenomenon known as sick building syndrome. Yet the air in other office buildings does not have elevated levels of these substances, even though those buildings are the same age as the "sick" buildings and have similar designs and ventilation systems.

Which of the following, if true, most helps to explain why not all office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering have air that contains elevated levels of toxic substances?

(A) Certain adhesives and drying agents used in particular types of furniture, carpets, and paint contribute the bulk of the toxic substances that circulate in the air of office buildings.

(B) Most office buildings with sick building syndrome were built between 1950 and 1990.

(C) Among buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering, houses are no less likely than office buildings to have air that contains elevated levels of toxic substances.

(D) The toxic substances that are found in the air of "sick" buildings are substances that are found in at least small quantities in nearly every building.

(E) Office buildings with windows that can readily be opened are unlikely to suffer from sick building syndrome.

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Originally posted by hideyoshi on 19 Aug 2015, 20:47.
Last edited by hazelnut on 13 Feb 2019, 04:41, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Aug 2015, 23:44
Difference in elevated levels of toxic substances in buildings with ventilation system preventing outside air to enter ==> toxic substances generated within some of the buildings ==> (A)
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2015, 19:52
Option A explains the difference why air in some buildings has elevated level of toxic substances and other buildings do not.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Oct 2015, 01:19
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Although option E is the tempting choice, it fails to explain the difference.

Because, "even though those buildings are the same age as the "sick" buildings and have similar designs and ventilation systems."
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Apr 2016, 07:24
The argument believes that sick building syndrome is caused by 'age' ,and design and ventilation systems of buildings. Something along the lines of - something else is causing this syndrome will clear confusion.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2017, 14:53
we need to find an answer choice explaining why some same office buildings have same toxic levels of air. A does the job
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New post 04 Aug 2017, 00:42
not able to figure out why option E is wrong ? I couldn't find the flaw,please help
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Aug 2017, 04:30
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r19 wrote:
not able to figure out why option E is wrong ? I couldn't find the flaw,please help


air in other office buildings does not have elevated levels of these substances, even though those buildings are the same age as the "sick" buildings and have similar designs and ventilation systems.

They have similar ventilation systems, which points to both of them having windows that can be opened. Since both have windows that can be opened, we still need a reason to explain why some buildings have more toxic air.
So E although extremely tempting, does not help explain the difference.

(A) on the other hands does explain why some buildings have toxic air, as they use certain substances that produce toxic flames.

Hope this helps!
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Aug 2017, 06:20
Thanks! @akshayk,missed the trap
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Aug 2017, 08:28
Correct choice is A - Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering have elevated levels of toxic substances in their interior air, but other such buildings similar in age, design, and ventilation do not. So the statement to look for is the one that describes differences in the air quality, designs and ventilation.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 14 Oct 2018, 22:53
Option E does not explain the discrepancy because it is given in the question stem that "sick buildings" have similar designs and ventilation systems.

Option A explains this discrepancy nicely making it the best choice.
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Originally posted by CAMANISHPARMAR on 31 May 2018, 22:35.
Last edited by CAMANISHPARMAR on 14 Oct 2018, 22:53, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jun 2018, 03:20
What is the paradox ?
Many office building are found to have sick building syndrome. Yet the air in other office buildings does not have elevated levels of these substances, even though those buildings are the same age as the "sick" buildings and have similar designs and ventilation systems.

Pre-think:

Some thing that will separate both type of buildings. So two similar type of buildings. from where the air inside both these type of builds is coming from. well, both will be having some people in them. but difference will be made if something else is also contributing to this . Sick buildings might have something in them that is increasing the pollution. Option A is on the same lines. Some buildings may have these types of furniture, carpets, and paint, while other buildings similar in age, design, and ventilation do not.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Aug 2018, 17:28
akshayk wrote:
r19 wrote:
not able to figure out why option E is wrong ? I couldn't find the flaw,please help


air in other office buildings does not have elevated levels of these substances, even though those buildings are the same age as the "sick" buildings and have similar designs and ventilation systems.

They have similar ventilation systems, which points to both of them having windows that can be opened. Since both have windows that can be opened, we still need a reason to explain why some buildings have more toxic air.
So E although extremely tempting, does not help explain the difference.

(A) on the other hands does explain why some buildings have toxic air, as they use certain substances that produce toxic flames.

Hope this helps!



sorry but this is not explaining the difference between some buildings that have elevated levels of toxic substance, and others dont have elevated levels.
what i dont understand in option A is that, it states that chemicals in furniture/carpets etc .... causes toxic substances to circulate, but were is it mentioned that there is a lot of such furniture in 'sick' buildings w.r.t to other buildings (non-sick buildings which also prevents outside air from coming in)
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Oct 2018, 22:56
Official Answer:

Argument Evaluation

Situation Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering have elevated levels of toxic substances in their interior air, but other such buildings similar in age, design, and ventilation do not.

Reasoning What would help to explain the difference in air quality among buildings similar in age, design, and ventilation? If office buildings are designed to prevent outside air from entering, toxic substances emitted into the interior air might not be ventilated out quickly, and thus might become more concentrated inside the building. But if such toxic substances are not emitted into a building's interior air in the first place, they will not become concentrated there, even if the building is poorly ventilated. So any factor that suggests why toxic substances are emitted into the interior air of some buildings but not others of similar age and design would help to explain the difference in the buildings' air quality.

Option A is correct: Correct. Some buildings may have these types of furniture, carpets, and paint, while other buildings similar in age, design, and ventilation do not.

Option B to E are incorrect because:-

Reasoning for B: Since all these buildings were built during the same period, this does not help to explain the difference in air quality among buildings similar in age.

Reasoning for C: The passage concerns air quality in office buildings only, not in houses.

Reasoning for D: This does not help to explain why these toxic substances are more concentrated in some office buildings than in others.

Reasoning for E: The passage concerns the differences in air quality only among office buildings that were designed to prevent outside air from entering.
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Re: Many office buildings designed to prevent outside air from entering   [#permalink] 14 Oct 2018, 22:56
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