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Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants

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Re: Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2016, 12:59
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akhileshdas wrote:
I came up with the assumption : Plant growth rate is not affected by Sulphur Dioxide at all and is affected by some other reason. Choice D gave me that reason and hence I selected it. egmat can you comment if my assumption is correct? I assume is it since I was able to select the right choice and none of the other choices are close to the assumption I came up with.


Same with me , :oops: I started doubting other factors affecting Plant growth ( One of the factors in my list was soil texture ), however I was content with option (D) putting the blame on the Heavy vehicular traffic. :-D
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Re: Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants [#permalink]

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New post 26 Oct 2016, 12:30
This question uses the word 'evaluate' in the question stem, but is really a resolve the paradox question. tag should be changed, how do we do that?

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Re: Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants [#permalink]

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New post 29 Oct 2016, 09:05
TheLordCommander wrote:
This question uses the word 'evaluate' in the question stem, but is really a resolve the paradox question. tag should be changed, how do we do that?


The tag is alright. Whether option D was taken into account while arriving at the conclusion is the point. It's not that the experiment poses a paradox and then option D explains the paradox. If option D was taken into account then the result of the experiment is correct, if option D was NOT taken into account, then the result may be faulty. Hence the question is an "evaluate argument" type question.

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Re: Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jan 2017, 16:05
I have read several explanations for this problem across various forums and am not satisfied with any of the answers. So, I decided to think this problem thoroughly and here is my explanation:
Facts:
Urban air SO2 > Rural air SO2
Urban plant growth < Rural plant growth

Is there are relation between SO2 and plant growth?

Experiment is conducted to filter out SO2. "Assuming" we have only one factor that affects the plant growth and that is SO2, then the result of the experiment of growing plants in the greenhouse (for those not from USA and don't know what a green house is: it is a sort of an enclosed garden) in urban and rural areas should be equal plant growth, i.e. a plant would grow 5 cms in urban area and 5 cms in rural area.
However, that is not the case: the plants still grow unequally!!! And this is the conclusion or result of the experiment.

So, now we need to figure out why they are not growing equally and forget the case about finding out whether SO2 affects the plant growth.

Choice A: Irrelevant. Experiments were conducted in greenhouse.
Choice B: This is the tricky one and needs some handling: Remember, previously we wanted to know whether SO2 affects the plant growth, this clearly shows that it does. If you thought that our aim still is to find the correlation, then you would immediately pick this choice. However, remember we have already proved that even after filtering SO2 there is unequal growth between urban greenhouse plant and rural greenhouse plant.
Choice C: Irrelevant.
Choice D: We are trying to evaluate the result of unequal growth between urban greenhouse plant and rural greenhouse plant which have both been filtered SO2. If the vehicular traffic reduced the light on the plants, then obviously the plants would grow slower. And this explains why the urban plant grew slower even after filtering SO2.
Choice E: The rate of filter change should not impact. This choice alludes towards the fact that the SO2 may have seeped in between the filter change. But it would be unsafe to assume that.

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Re: Urban air contains more sulfur dioxide than does rural air, and plants   [#permalink] 05 Jan 2017, 16:05

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