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V21-06

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V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Feb 2018, 19:31
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From 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil. The increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic was responsible for most of this decline. However, although aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling, the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage.

Which of the following, if true in Brazil from 2000 to 2010, most helps to account for the apparent discrepancy?


A. Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.
B. Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.
C. Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.
D. The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.
E. In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.
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Re V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Feb 2018, 19:31
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Official Solution:


From 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil. The increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic was responsible for most of this decline. However, although aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling, the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage.

Which of the following, if true in Brazil from 2000 to 2010, most helps to account for the apparent discrepancy?


A. Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.
B. Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.
C. Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.
D. The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.
E. In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.


First, let's identify the "apparent discrepancy" in the question.

We know that from 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil, thanks primarily to "the increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic." We also know that aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling. So it would seem that the weight of aluminum in domestic garbage would decline faster.

But here's the discrepancy: the opposite seems to be true. "...the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage."

So we need to find something that will help us explain why the total weight of plastic bottles declined by a greater percentage than the weight of aluminum cans -- despite the fact that aluminum recycling was more widespread during this period.

(A) Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.

At first glance, this might seem to be out of scope, since the passage doesn't mention glass at all. But (A) is basically telling us that recycling might not be the only factor reducing the amount of aluminum in Brazil's garbage. If consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones, that would reduce the number of plastic beverage bottles used by Brazilians and thus reduce the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage.

In other words, plastic recycling may not have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage, but the change in Brazilians' preferences may have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage. This potentially explains why the percent decrease in weight was higher for plastic bottles than for aluminum cans, so let's hang on to choice (A).

(B) Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.

Absolutely everything in the questions deals with percentages, so the relative weight of different containers is irrelevant. Choice (B) does not explain the apparent discrepancy.

(C) Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.

This statement gives us another reason to expect the percent decrease in the weight of aluminum cans to be GREATER than the percent decrease in the weight of plastic bottles. If the opposite information were given (i.e. that a significant fraction of aluminum cans were not beverage containers and most recycled plastic bottles were beverage containers), that might help explain the discrepancy. The statement given in choice (C) only makes the discrepancy more glaring.

(D) The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.

This statement also makes the discrepancy more glaring. If plastic recycling is less widespread AND Brazilians are using more plastic bottles, we would certainly expect the weight of aluminum cans to decrease by a larger percentage. If we were told that the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians increased at a significantly faster rate than did the total weight of plastic bottles, that might explain the discrepancy; however, the statement given in choice (D) does not explain the discrepancy.

(E) In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.

We don't care about the number of bottles or cans, only about the total weight as a percentage of the total domestic garbage. Statement (E) does not help.

Choice (A) is the best answer.


Answer: A
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Re V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Jun 2018, 21:04
I think this is a high-quality question and I agree with explanation.

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Re V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Sep 2018, 15:09
I think this is a high-quality question and I agree with explanation.
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New post 20 Oct 2018, 12:57
Hey, Need more clarity on why B is incorrect.
I choose B with the following reasoning -
if the weight of the plastic bottles is more that the Aluminium cans. Then, even though, less number of plastic bottles are recycles as compared to aluminium cans, the net weight of plastic recycled and hence the decrease in plastic garbage will be more as compared to Aluminium cans.

Note - After reading the explanation, i admit option is a better answer but want to understand the error in my thinking. Am i making any additional assumption here?
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V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jan 2019, 16:04
RajatGoel wrote:
Hey, Need more clarity on why B is incorrect.
I choose B with the following reasoning -
if the weight of the plastic bottles is more that the Aluminium cans. Then, even though, less number of plastic bottles are recycles as compared to aluminium cans, the net weight of plastic recycled and hence the decrease in plastic garbage will be more as compared to Aluminium cans.

Note - After reading the explanation, i admit option is a better answer but want to understand the error in my thinking. Am i making any additional assumption here?


I did the same thing and chose B. I haven't figured out why it's wrong yet...
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Re: V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Feb 2019, 18:26
The answer is A.

If there was more aluminum recycling than plastic recycling taking place, but there ended up being a lesser percent of plastics in the garbage compared to aluminum in terms of their respective totals, then there must be fewer plastic bottles to begin with than there used to be.

Let's say 10% of aluminum bottles are being recycled, and this increases to 20% during the period. Over the same period, plastic recycling increases from 5% to 15%, then you would assume that there are more plastics in the landfill. But if the number of plastics being used decreased, this would explain the lighter weight of plastic.

When in doubt, draw it out!
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Re V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Apr 2019, 10:22
I think this is a poor-quality question and the explanation isn't clear enough, please elaborate.
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Re: V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Apr 2019, 08:30
Bunuel
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Hello,

Could you please elaborate on why B is wrong? Wouldn´t heavier plastic bottles mean that, even if there is less recycling of plastic, there could be a greater decline of total waste weight because of the weight of the plastic bottles?
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Re: V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Apr 2019, 11:13
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This isn’t really relevant as written. It could’ve been relevant if it said that during that specific period the weight of plastic bottles has changed. However it does not say that and we’re assuming that the weight of the plastic bottles was constant during before and after the period of observation.

Hope it helps.


gmatlc wrote:
Bunuel
jeffn

Hello,

Could you please elaborate on why B is wrong? Wouldn´t heavier plastic bottles mean that, even if there is less recycling of plastic, there could be a greater decline of total waste weight because of the weight of the plastic bottles?


Posted from my mobile device
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Re: V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Apr 2019, 22:11
jeffn wrote:
Official Solution:


From 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil. The increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic was responsible for most of this decline. However, although aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling, the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage.

Which of the following, if true in Brazil from 2000 to 2010, most helps to account for the apparent discrepancy?


A. Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.
B. Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.
C. Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.
D. The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.
E. In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.


First, let's identify the "apparent discrepancy" in the question.

We know that from 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil, thanks primarily to "the increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic." We also know that aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling. So it would seem that the weight of aluminum in domestic garbage would decline faster.

But here's the discrepancy: the opposite seems to be true. "...the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage."

So we need to find something that will help us explain why the total weight of plastic bottles declined by a greater percentage than the weight of aluminum cans -- despite the fact that aluminum recycling was more widespread during this period.

(A) Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.

At first glance, this might seem to be out of scope, since the passage doesn't mention glass at all. But (A) is basically telling us that recycling might not be the only factor reducing the amount of aluminum in Brazil's garbage. If consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones, that would reduce the number of plastic beverage bottles used by Brazilians and thus reduce the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage.

In other words, plastic recycling may not have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage, but the change in Brazilians' preferences may have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage. This potentially explains why the percent decrease in weight was higher for plastic bottles than for aluminum cans, so let's hang on to choice (A).

(B) Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.

Absolutely everything in the questions deals with percentages, so the relative weight of different containers is irrelevant. Choice (B) does not explain the apparent discrepancy.

(C) Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.

This statement gives us another reason to expect the percent decrease in the weight of aluminum cans to be GREATER than the percent decrease in the weight of plastic bottles. If the opposite information were given (i.e. that a significant fraction of aluminum cans were not beverage containers and most recycled plastic bottles were beverage containers), that might help explain the discrepancy. The statement given in choice (C) only makes the discrepancy more glaring.

(D) The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.

This statement also makes the discrepancy more glaring. If plastic recycling is less widespread AND Brazilians are using more plastic bottles, we would certainly expect the weight of aluminum cans to decrease by a larger percentage. If we were told that the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians increased at a significantly faster rate than did the total weight of plastic bottles, that might explain the discrepancy; however, the statement given in choice (D) does not explain the discrepancy.

(E) In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.

We don't care about the number of bottles or cans, only about the total weight as a percentage of the total domestic garbage. Statement (E) does not help.

Choice (A) is the best answer.


Answer: A


I read through this post but i am still not able to understand how option C increases this discrepancy?

Thanks.
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Re: V21-06  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2019, 03:10
jeffn wrote:
Official Solution:


From 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil. The increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic was responsible for most of this decline. However, although aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling, the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage.

Which of the following, if true in Brazil from 2000 to 2010, most helps to account for the apparent discrepancy?


A. Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.
B. Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.
C. Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.
D. The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.
E. In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.


First, let's identify the "apparent discrepancy" in the question.

We know that from 2000 to 2010, beverage containers accounted for a steadily decreasing percentage of the total weight of domestic garbage in Brazil, thanks primarily to "the increasingly widespread practice of recycling aluminum and plastic." We also know that aluminum recycling was more widely practiced in this period than plastic recycling. So it would seem that the weight of aluminum in domestic garbage would decline faster.

But here's the discrepancy: the opposite seems to be true. "...the total weight of plastic bottles in Brazil’s domestic garbage declined by a greater percentage during this time than the total weight of aluminum cans in Brazil’s domestic garbage."

So we need to find something that will help us explain why the total weight of plastic bottles declined by a greater percentage than the weight of aluminum cans -- despite the fact that aluminum recycling was more widespread during this period.

(A) Consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones.

At first glance, this might seem to be out of scope, since the passage doesn't mention glass at all. But (A) is basically telling us that recycling might not be the only factor reducing the amount of aluminum in Brazil's garbage. If consumers increasingly favored glass beverage containers over plastic ones, that would reduce the number of plastic beverage bottles used by Brazilians and thus reduce the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage.

In other words, plastic recycling may not have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage, but the change in Brazilians' preferences may have significantly reduced the weight of plastic in Brazil's garbage. This potentially explains why the percent decrease in weight was higher for plastic bottles than for aluminum cans, so let's hang on to choice (A).

(B) Plastic bottles were significantly heavier than aluminum cans of comparable size.

Absolutely everything in the questions deals with percentages, so the relative weight of different containers is irrelevant. Choice (B) does not explain the apparent discrepancy.

(C) Most recycled aluminum cans were beverage containers, but a significant fraction of recycled plastic bottles were not beverage containers.

This statement gives us another reason to expect the percent decrease in the weight of aluminum cans to be GREATER than the percent decrease in the weight of plastic bottles. If the opposite information were given (i.e. that a significant fraction of aluminum cans were not beverage containers and most recycled plastic bottles were beverage containers), that might help explain the discrepancy. The statement given in choice (C) only makes the discrepancy more glaring.

(D) The total weight of plastic bottles purchased by Brazilians increased at a slightly faster rate than did the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians.

This statement also makes the discrepancy more glaring. If plastic recycling is less widespread AND Brazilians are using more plastic bottles, we would certainly expect the weight of aluminum cans to decrease by a larger percentage. If we were told that the total weight of aluminum cans purchased by Brazilians increased at a significantly faster rate than did the total weight of plastic bottles, that might explain the discrepancy; however, the statement given in choice (D) does not explain the discrepancy.

(E) In Brazil, the total number of plastic bottles recycled between 2000 and 2010 was less than the total number of aluminum cans recycled during that time.

We don't care about the number of bottles or cans, only about the total weight as a percentage of the total domestic garbage. Statement (E) does not help.

Choice (A) is the best answer.


Answer: A
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Re: V21-06   [#permalink] 12 Oct 2019, 03:10
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