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There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries...

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Veritas Prep GMAT Instructor
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There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries... [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2018, 17:11
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A
B
C
D
E

Difficulty:

  45% (medium)

Question Stats:

55% (00:41) correct 45% (01:03) wrong based on 49 sessions

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There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries of North America and to the world by the 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System.

(A) There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries of North America and to the world by the 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System.
(B) By the 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System the refineries of North America and the world are supplied with crude oil and natural gas.
(C) The 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System supplies crude oil and natural gas to the refineries of North America and to the world.
(D) The refineries of North America and the world are supplied with crude oil and natural gas by the 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System.
(E) Crude oil and natural gas are supplied by the 800-mile-long Trans Alaska Pipeline System to the refineries of North America and to the world.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries... [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2018, 17:14
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One of the answer choices contains a clear subject-verb agreement error. Three of the five answer choices highlight what I call a “Style” error. An answer choice contains a Style error when it is grammatically fine, but is overly complicated, awkward, ambiguous, or redundant. It is important to note, however, that you can only evaluate Style errors when you have eliminated all other errors of meaning or grammar. I often tell my classes: “Meaning trumps grammar, and grammar trumps style.

Answer choice A can be eliminated for a concrete subject-verb agreement error. Since the subject of the sentence (“crude oil and natural gas”) is compound, the verb must take the plural form. The reason why the singular form sounds fine to most people’s ears is because the part of the subject closest to the verb (“crude oil”) is singular. But the “and” separating the two parts of the subject forces the plural form. Period. This is a deliberate trap set up to confuse test-takers. The sentence could correctly read, “There are crude oil and natural gas supplied…” Answer choice A can be eliminated.

Answer choices B, D, and E are all grammatically okay. They sound a little convoluted, but they cannot be eliminated because of grammar or meaning issues alone. All three of these answer choices contain a Style error type called passive voice (when the subject is not the “doer” of the verb, but is being “done to” by the verb.) Note that passive voice is perfectly legal from a grammatical standpoint. The GMAT sometimes even includes passive verb voice in correct answers to confuse test-takers. But because the remaining answer choices do not contain substantial grammatical or meaning errors, we can use passive verb voice as potential leverage to eliminate answer choices.

Answer choice C is straightforward. It correctly avoids subject-verb agreement errors and uses active voice. (Notice in answer choice C that the subject “Pipeline System” is the “doer” of the verb. The “Pipeline System supplies crude oil and natural gas.”) C is the correct answer.
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Aaron J. Pond
Veritas Prep Elite-Level Instructor

Hit "+1 Kudos" if my post helped you understand the GMAT better.
Look me up at https://www.veritasprep.com/gmat/aaron-pond/ if you want to learn more GMAT Jujitsu.

Re: There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries...   [#permalink] 04 Jan 2018, 17:14
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There is crude oil and natural gas supplied to the refineries...

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