State researchers have found that since the oil price increases of the 1970s, there has been a decline in home energy...

Stephanie on April 19, 2019

How is C the correct answer and not A?

How is C the correct answer and not A?


phillip on August 24, 2019

I am also confused as to why the answer is C. Can someone please explain?

Irina on August 25, 2019

@Steph & @philip-blackmar,

The argument tells us that the decline in energy consumption is due to decreased standards of living and changes the way people spend their time. (A) tells us that sales of portable heaters rose as families concentrated their winter activities in a limited number of rooms, which constitutes a change in the way people spend their time to decrease energy consumption as a portable heater consumes less energy than central heating. Hence, (A) supports the conclusion.

(C) tells us that 39% of households decreased energy costs by having relatively inexpensive work done to improve the efficiency of their heating systems rather than by decreasing their standard of living or changing the way they spent their time. Since (C) provides an alternative explanation to a decline in energy consumption, it fails to support the argument's conclusion.