Geologist: The dominant view that petroleum formed from the fossilized remains of plants and animals deep in the eart...

Rachel on May 10, 2018

Please explain

Can you please explain why the answer is D?

1 Reply

Mehran on May 21, 2018

Hey @rmkrutz@crimson.ua.edu, thanks for your post.

This is a Weaken question, which asks you to weaken the argument in the stimulus. So let's first be sure we have a clear understanding of what that argument is.

The geologist concludes that certain scientists' view that petroleum formed from deep carbon deposits dating from the earth's formation is refuted by the fact that petroleum has stuff in it called biomarkers (i.e., molecules indicating the past or present existence of a living organism).

Let's weaken the geologist's view - in this context, let's select an answer choice that could bolster the alternative view that petroleum comes from carbon deposits dating from the earth's formation.

Answer choice (D) does this. If it is true that certain strains of bacteria (i.e., a living organism) thrive deep inside the earth's crust, then petroleum formed from that crust could have biomarkers (traces of living organisms).

Hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any additional questions.