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# The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is

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Director
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The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2005, 16:56
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77% (01:03) correct 23% (00:58) wrong based on 717 sessions

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The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is burned is restricted by law. New coal-burning plants usually comply with the law by installing expensive equipment to
filter sulfur dioxide from their emissions. These new plants could save money by installing instead less expensive cleaning equipment that chemically removes most sulfur
from coal before combustion.

Which of the following, if known, would be most relevant to evaluating the claim above about how new coal-burning plants could save money?

A. Whether existing oil-burning plants are required to filter sulfur dioxide from their emissions
B. Whether the expense of installing the cleaning equipment in a new plant is less than the expense of installing the cleaning equipment in an older plant
C. Whether the process of cleaning the coal is more expensive than the process of filtering the emissions
D. Whether lawful emissions of sulfur dioxide from coal-burning plants are damaging the environment
E. Whether existing plants that use the filtering equipment could replace this equipment with the cleaning equipment and still compete with new plants that install the cleaning equipment
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Last edited by JarvisR on 06 Jul 2015, 10:14, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2005, 17:09
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C it is.

We know about the cost of the equipment, but we dont know about the cost of the process.

It is like a printer, I can buy a cheap printer whose printing cost is more than the expensive printer whose printing cost is cheap.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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29 Jul 2005, 05:09
(C).

Clean before buring coal is more (or less) expensive than filter after burning coal? If i know which is cheaper (or more expensive), then i can decide if i will save money or not by whichever of the 2 processes i use.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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29 Jul 2005, 09:10
C it is,

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 10:19
Any other opinions on this?

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 10:35
C as well.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 11:56
had a temptation to pick E
But I feel correct one is C

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 12:08
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C. Try to negate C and it will affect the conclusion.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 17:07
C

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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11 Nov 2008, 22:44
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(C)
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Kick GMAT ass

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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12 Nov 2008, 22:31
clear C.
Whts the OA?
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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20 Nov 2010, 10:12
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OA indeed C
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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29 Aug 2011, 04:20
I chose C but the OA i have is E....

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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01 Sep 2011, 18:04
Yes, C.

Thought E looks tempting.

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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09 Oct 2011, 02:28
clearly C...
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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16 Jan 2012, 07:54
DeeptiM wrote:
I chose C but the OA i have is E....

It can not be E but C only.

Argument does not talk about the competition between old and new plants.
Even if we were to bring in that line, why would new plants care about what is being used by old plants as long as the new plants can be benefited by something?
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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16 Jan 2012, 08:34
+1 for C

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2013, 03:33
hi,

why can not we have option B as our answer? please explain in detail.

Thanks

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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2013, 15:31
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asquare04120 wrote:
hi,

why can not we have option B as our answer? please explain in detail.

Thanks

Hi asquare04120

Welcome to GMAT club!

GENERAL METHOD

This is “evaluate the argument”, one of the most difficult type of CR questions. To attack this question:
- First, determine the conclusion is KEY. If you do not know what the argument wants to conclude. How can you evaluate its argument?
- Next, you can use general methods to eliminate wrong answers (out of scope, reverse answer, …)
- When you narrow to TWO options and don’t know which one is correct, you can apply “variance method”.

How to use this strategy? The answer choices always have the question “whether X can help Y……?”, for instance. Just plug in “yes”, or “no” to the question. For example: X can help Y…., and X cannot help Y….. If the two answers (Yes & No) make the author changes his/her conclusion. This option choice is correct.

ANALYZE THE STIMULUS:

Fact: New coal-burning plants usually comply with the law by installing expensive equipment to
filter sulfur dioxide from their emissions.
Fact: installing cleaning equipment that chemically removes most sulfur from coal before combustion is less expensive.
Conclusion: These new plants could save money by installing cleaning equipment.

Pre-thinking: Are there any cost other than “equipment cost”? For example: administration cost, labor cost, maintenance cost, etc… We should calculate TOTAL COST to make a final conclusion.

A. Whether existing oil-burning plants are required to filter sulfur dioxide from their emissions
Wrong. Nothing about “costs”. Out immediately.

B. Whether the expense of installing the cleaning equipment in a new plant is less than the expense of installing the cleaning equipment in an older plant
Wrong. We are comparing expense of “cleaning equipment” vs “filtering equipment”. B only compares expense of installing “cleaning equipment” in new plan and old plan. It does not help you to compare expense between two options “cleaning equipment” vs “filtering equipment”. Hence, B is wrong.

C. Whether the process of cleaning the coal is more expensive than the process of filtering the emissions
Correct.
If “YES”. the process of cleaning the coal is more expensive than the process of filtering the emissions ==> the new plants could not save money by installing cleaning equipment.
If “NO”. the process of cleaning the coal is NOT more expensive than the process of filtering the emissions ==> the new plants could save money by installing cleaning equipment.
Thus, C definitely can help to “evaluate” the conclusion. Hence, C is correct.

D. Whether lawful emissions of sulfur dioxide from coal-burning plants are damaging the environment
Wrong. Nothing about “costs”. Out immediately.

E. Whether existing plants that use the filtering equipment could replace this equipment with the cleaning equipment and still compete with new plants that install the cleaning equipment
Wrong. TEMPTING but wrong.
If “Yes”. Existing plants that use the filtering equipment COULD replace this equipment with the cleaning equipment .......... Okay, existing plants can replace their equipment with cleaning equipment. How can we compare between “cleaning equipment” and “filter equipment”, which one is cheaper?
If “No”. Existing plants that use the filtering equipment COULD NOT replace this equipment with the cleaning equipment….. Okay, existing plants cannot replace their equipment with cleaning equipment, they still use filtering equipment. How can we compare between “cleaning equipment” and “filter equipment”, which one is cheaper?
Clearly, E just says the existing plants can or cannot replace the filtering equipment with cleaning equipment. That's it. E does not help anything to “evaluate” which one could help to save money. Hence, E is wrong

Hope it helps.
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is [#permalink]

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20 Sep 2014, 02:15
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Re: The emission of sulfur dioxide when high-sulfur coal is   [#permalink] 20 Sep 2014, 02:15

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