The following appeared in a memorandum from the planning department of an electric power company."Several recent surveys indicate that home owners are increasingly eager to conserve energy. At the same time, manufacturers are now marketing many home appli

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The following appeared in a memorandum from the planning department of an electric power company.
"Several recent surveys indicate that home owners are increasingly eager to conserve energy. At the same time, manufacturers are now marketing many home appliances, such as refrigerators and air conditioners, that are almost twice as energy efficient as those sold a decade ago. Also, new technologies for better home insulation and passive solar heating are readily available to reduce the energy needed for home heating. Therefore, the total demand for electricity in our area will not increase—and may decline slightly. Since our three electric generating plants in operation for the past twenty years have always met our needs, construction of new generating plants will not be necessary."
Write a response in which you examine the stated and/or unstated assumptions of the argument. Be sure to explain how the argument depends on these assumptions and what the implications are for the argument if the assumptions prove unwarranted.

The arguer has recommended that construction of new generating plants will be unnecessary and will not be beneficial to electric power company due to current trend of reduction in energy consumption. The premise of the conclusion is several surveys which indicate that home owners are eager to save the energy and the manufacturers are also making their products energy efficient compared to a decade earlier. Also alternative technologies are available to consumers at present. The argument seems convincing to readers at first. But on a closer analysis, it proves to be consist of full of loopholes and flaws that renders the argument unconvincing.

To begin with, based on the trend to reduce the consumption of energy, the arguer directly jumps into the conclusion that net energy demand will reduce . The author haven’t taken into consideration the fact of ever increasing population. In this case, even if the energy consumption per family reduces, still the net growth may exceed the current demand. Also it has been stated that manufacturers are making home appliances much more energy efficient and will contribute in reducing total energy consumption. However, this may actually boost the consumer market in buying the home appliances and increasing demand of energy as people who were not using these products will be bent to using them after this.

Secondly, the author only considered decline in power requirement looking at the consumers who use these home appliances. There are significant number of people who don’t depend on these products. For example, majority of people lives in villages where people cannot think of refrigerators and air conditioners. In those cases, the point of reducing consumption of energy remains invalid. It has been argued that there are alternate forms of energy available to consumers now. However, the arguer has not put forwarded any evidence that shows that consumers are indeed using them. While choosing any energy source, availability of that kind of energy and cost per unit plays deciding role for consumer to choose it. If alternate energy proves to be expensive or unreliable, then consumers would prefer to use conventional source of energy.

Thirdly, the arguer tried to prove his conclusion based on several surveys whose validity is questionable. The representative sample on which the survey is done is unknown to readers. If the sample fails to represent all people in the country covering all locations including towns and villages or doesn’t include people of all ages, then the result of the survey may become skewed. Also in the survey it has been stated that people are eager to reduce the energy consumption. It is likely that inspite of their attempt, they may not be able to reduce energy consumption.

In conclusion, the above arguments clearly shows that the arguer fails to justify his recommendation due to existing flaws. The argument could have been substantiated if the arguer can provide results of reliable surveys which give us the number that the energy consumption is indeed declining over the nation and could provide solid reason that the reduction trend will be there in future also. In absence of proper arguments, the present recommendation remains unconvincing and needs to be solidified before acceptance.

Average: 7 (4 votes)
Essay Categories


Argument 1 -- OK

Argument 2 -- OK

Argument 3 -- little bit doubt

Attribute Value Ideal
Score: 4.0 out of 6
Category: Good Excellent
No. of Grammatical Errors: 0 2
No. of Spelling Errors: 0 2
No. of Sentences: 26 15
No. of Words: 532 350
No. of Characters: 2717 1500
No. of Different Words: 246 200
Fourth Root of Number of Words: 4.803 4.7
Average Word Length: 5.107 4.6
Word Length SD: 2.761 2.4
No. of Words greater than 5 chars: 213 100
No. of Words greater than 6 chars: 133 80
No. of Words greater than 7 chars: 96 40
No. of Words greater than 8 chars: 69 20
Use of Passive Voice (%): 0 0
Avg. Sentence Length: 20.462 21.0
Sentence Length SD: 8.728 7.5
Use of Discourse Markers (%): 0.731 0.12
Sentence-Text Coherence: 0.282 0.35
Sentence-Para Coherence: 0.47 0.50
Sentence-Sentence Coherence: 0.094 0.07
Number of Paragraphs: 5 5

Hi Essay E-Rater,

Thanks a lot for reviewing my essays. I just have one question regarding the rating procedure you're using. Is this on the same line that ETS grades one's essays? Because although I think the quality of my essays remained more or less same, I scored in lowest 14%ile (point equivalent 3.0) in AWA section when I sat for GRE last month.

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The possible reason is that you wrote one of the essays out of topic. Can you try this topic, so we can check it out:

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Write a response in which you discuss one or more alternative explanations that could rival the proposed explanation and explain how your explanation(s) can plausibly account for the facts presented in the argument.