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LSAT阅读理解之官网样题(四)

2016-05-10 11:33

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  新东方网LSAT频道在此与大家分享LSAC官网上公布的LSAT阅读理解样题(四),希望对大家备考LSAT阅读理解有所帮助。

  Passage Pair for Questions 8 through 14

  For the following comparative reading set, information about the difficulty of the questions is not available.

  The following passages were adapted from articles published in the mid-1990s.

  Passage A

  In January 1995 a vast section of ice broke off the Larsen ice shelf in Antarctica. While this occurrence, the direct result of a regional warming trend that began in the 1940s, may be the most spectacular manifestation yet of serious climate changes occurring on the planet as a consequence of atmospheric heating, other symptoms—more intense storms, prolonged droughts, extended heat waves, and record flooding—have been emerging around the world for several years.

  According to scientific estimates, furthermore, sea-level rise resulting from global warming will reach 3 feet (1 meter) within the next century. Such a rise could submerge vast coastal areas, with potentially irreversible consequences.

  Late in 1995 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported that it had detected the “fingerprint” of human activity as a contributor to the warming of the earth’s atmosphere. Furthermore, panel scientists attributed such warming directly to the increasing quantities of carbon dioxide released by our burning of fossil fuels. The IPCC report thus clearly identifies a pattern of climatic response to human activities in the climatological record, thereby establishing without doubt that global warming can no longer be attributed solely to natural climate variability.

  Passage B

  Over the past two decades, an extreme view of global warming has developed. While it contains some facts, this view also contains exaggerations and misstatements, and has sometimes resulted in unreasonable environmental policies.

  According to this view, global warming will cause the polar ice to melt, raising global sea levels, flooding entire regions, destroying crops, and displacing millions of people. However, there is still a great deal of uncertainty regarding a potential rise in sea levels. Certainly, if the earth warms, sea levels will rise as the water heats up and expands. If the polar ice caps melt, more water will be added to the oceans, raising sea levels even further.There is some evidence that melting has occurred; however, there is also evidence that the Antarctic ice sheets are growing. In fact, it is possible that a warmer sea surface temperature will cause more water to evaporate, and when wind carries the moisture-laden air over the land, it will precipitate out as snow, causing the ice sheets to grow. Certainly, we need to have better knowledge about the hydrological cycle before predicting dire consequences as a result of recent increases in global temperatures.

  This view also exaggerates the impact that human activity has on the planet. While human activity may be a factor in global warming, natural events appear to be far more important. The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, for example, caused a decrease in the average global temperature, while El Niño, a periodic perturbation in the ocean’s temperature and circulation, causes extreme global climatic events, including droughts and major flooding. Of even greater importance to the earth’s climate are variations in the sun’s radiation and in the earth’s orbit. Climate variability has always existed and will continue to do so, regardless of human intervention.

  Question 8

  Which one of the following questions is central to both passages?

  How has an increase in the burning of fossil fuels raised the earth’s temperature?

  To what extent can global warming be attributed to human activity?

  What steps should be taken to reduce the rate of global warming?

  What kinds of human activities increase the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere?

  To what extent is global warming caused by variations in the sun’s radiation and the earth’s orbit?

  Explanation for Question 8

  Most single-passage reading comprehension sets include a question that asks about the passage’s main point or central topic, or the author’s main purpose in writing. The same is true of most comparative reading sets, but in comparative reading sets the questions may ask about the main point, primary purpose, or central issue of both passages, as is the case here.

  The correct response is (B), “To what extent can global warming be attributed to human activity?” Both passages are concerned with the current warming trend in the earth’s climate, which is generally referred to as “global warming.” Both passages agree that the earth’s climate is indeed getting warmer, but it is clear that the two authors differ in their views on the issue. In the third paragraph of each passage, the author raises the question of the causes of global warming. The third paragraph of passage A cites a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that attributes warming “directly to the increasing quantities of carbon dioxide released by our burning of fossil fuels.” The author concludes, “The IPCC report thus clearly identifies a pattern of climatic response to human activities in the climatological record, thereby establishing without doubt that global warming can no longer be attributed solely to natural climate variability.” In contrast, in the third paragraph of passage B, the author argues, “While human activity may be a factor in global warming, natural events appear to be far more important.” In other words, a central concern in each passage is the cause of global warming, and more specifically, the extent to which the phenomenon can be attributed to human activity or to natural climate variability. Thus, response (B) expresses a question that is central to both passages.

  Response (A) is incorrect because passage B does not address the issue of fossil fuels. While passage A states that the IPCC scientists attributed global warming “directly to the increasing quantities of carbon dioxide released by our burning of fossil fuels” (third paragraph), passage B makes no mention of fossil fuels or carbon dioxide.

  Response (C) is incorrect because neither passage discusses steps that should be taken to reduce global warming. The author of passage A believes that global warming is a serious problem for which human activity bears significant responsibility, so he or she presumably believes that some steps should indeed be taken. But he or she does not actually discuss any such steps. Meanwhile, the author of passage B is not even convinced that human activity bears much responsibility for global warming; accordingly, passage B is not concerned at all with the question of what steps should be taken to address the problem.

  Response (D) is incorrect because, as mentioned in the explanation of response (A) above, passage B makes no mention of carbon dioxide or of any kinds of human activities that increase carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

  Response (E) is incorrect because passage A does not mention variations in the sun’s radiation and the earth’s orbit as possible causes of global warming. The author of passage B mentions variations in the sun’s radiation and the earth’s orbit as natural contributors to climate variation, but does so in order to illustrate a more general point, namely, that natural climate variability may very well explain global warming. The sun’s radiation and the earth’s orbit are not the central concern of passage B.

  Question 9

  Which one of the following is mentioned in passage B but not in passage A as a possible consequence of global warming?

  an increase in the size of the Antarctic ice sheet

  a decrease in the amount of snowfall

  a falling of ocean sea levels

  an increase in the severity of heat waves

  an increase in the frequency of major flooding

  Explanation for Question 9

  This question is designed to test the ability to recognize a significant difference in the content of the two passages.

  The correct response is (A), “an increase in the size of the Antarctic ice sheet.” In the second paragraph of passage B, the author explicitly cites the possibility that the Antarctic ice sheet will grow as a result of warmer sea temperatures brought about by global warming. On the other hand, passage A does not mention any possibility that the Antarctic ice sheet might grow. In fact, on the topic of the Antarctic ice sheet, passage A alludes only to the breaking off of part of the Larsen ice shelf (first sentence of the passage), which suggests that, if anything, the author of passage A believes that the Antarctic ice sheet is shrinking because of global warming. Thus response (A) describes something that is mentioned in passage B, but not passage A, as a possible consequence of global warming.

  Response (B) is incorrect because passage B mentions only increased snowfall as a possible consequence of global warming. The correct response must be something mentioned in passage B but not in passage A.

  Response (C) is incorrect because passage B mentions only rising sea levels as a possible consequence of global warming. The author’s reference to the possibility that the Antarctic ice sheet might grow suggests that, in the author’s eyes, the rise in sea level might be slowed. But nowhere does the author say that sea levels might drop as a consequence of global warming.

  Response (D) is incorrect because, while passage A mentions extended heat waves as a consequence of global warming, passage B does not mention heat waves in any connection.

  Response (E) is incorrect because passage A discusses major flooding as a consequence of global warming in the first two paragraphs.

  Question 10

  The authors of the two passages would be most likely to disagree over

  whether or not any melting of the polar ice caps has occurred

  whether natural events can cause changes in global climate conditions

  whether warmer air temperatures will be likely to raise oceanic water temperatures

  the extent to which natural climate variability is responsible for global warming

  the extent to which global temperatures have risen in recent decades

  Explanation for Question 10

  A significant number of questions for Comparative Reading passages require an ability to infer what the authors’ views are and how they compare. Some questions ask about points of agreement between the authors. Others, such as this one, ask about points on which the authors disagree.

  As you read the response choices for a question of this sort, it is a good idea to recall what you may have already concluded about points of agreement and disagreement between the authors. For example, it was noted above that the authors of these two passages disagree on at least one key issue (see the explanation of question 8)—the causes of global warming. The correct response to this question is related to this point of contention: the correct response is (D), “the extent to which natural climate variability is responsible for global warming.” In the last paragraph of passage A, the author states, “The IPCC report thus clearly identifies a pattern of climatic response to human activities in the climatological record, thereby establishing without doubt that global warming can no longer be attributed solely to natural climate variability.” In contrast, in the last paragraph of passage B, the author states, “While human activity may be a factor in global warming, natural events appear to be far more important.” In short, while the author of passage A holds that human activity is substantially responsible for global warming, the author of passage B holds that natural events may exert far more influence on the earth’s climate.

  Response (A) is incorrect because it is not clear that the authors would disagree over this issue. In the first paragraph of passage A, the author describes the breaking off of part of the Larsen ice shelf in Antarctica as “the direct result of a regional warming trend that began in the 1940s.” The author does not use the precise words the “melting of the polar ice caps,” but the implication of what the author does say is that such melting is obviously taking place. On the other hand, it is not clear that the author of passage B would disagree with this claim, since the author concedes that there is evidence supporting the position: “There is some evidence that melting has occurred ...” (second paragraph).

  Response (B) is incorrect because both authors would agree that natural events can cause changes in global climate conditions. Since the author of passage B argues that natural events appear to be a more important factor in global warming than human activity, he or she must agree that natural events can affect global climate. And indeed, in the last paragraph the author cites the eruption of Mount Pinatubo, El Niño, and variations in the sun’s radiation and the earth’s orbit as examples of natural events that are known to have done so. On the other hand, the concluding sentence of passage A—which ends with the claim that theIPCC report has established “that global warming can no longer be attributed solely to natural climate variability” (emphasis added)—indirectly acknowledges that natural events do play a role in changes in the earth’s climate. Thus the authors would agree with respect to response (B).

  Response (C) is incorrect because the passages provide no evidence for concluding that the authors would disagree over the effect of warmer air temperatures on oceanic water temperatures. The author of passage B holds that warmer air temperatures would heat up the oceans. The author states in the second paragraph, “Certainly, if the earth warms, sea levels will rise as the water heats up and expands.” However, the author of passage A says nothing at all about a causal relationship between air temperature and oceanic water temperatures, and this lack of evidence does not allow us to conclude that the author would disagree with the view expressed by the author of passage B.

  Response (E) is incorrect because the passages do not provide any specific indications regarding either author’s views on the extent to which global temperatures have risen in recent decades. Both authors presume that global temperatures have risen, but they say nothing that would allow us to draw any clear inferences regarding their views on how much.

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