- Tue Jan 19, 2021 3:10 pm
First remember that this is a "most strongly supported" question, so the answer choice gets a little more leeway than we'd be able to give it on an absolute "must be true" question. Next, remember that you have very good reasons to eliminate all of answer choices A through D (A, because of the new information about arrival; B, because of the new information about the Mississippi River and clams and pearls; C, because it's too exaggerated and something could be a "nuisance" even if there's a mechanical means to clear it out; and D, because algae in the stimulus is only discussed in context of discharge from chemical plants, not in context of the intake pipes of nuclear power/water plants).
The ending of answer choice E is supported by the mere fact that the mussels do remove some hazardous wastes, so if they retain those wastes without transforming them, it's reasonable to suppose that they would be contaminated and regarded as hazardous waste. Is that a part-whole error? I don't know, but consider a hypothetical scenario to try to resolve that issue. What happens, say, if you have a bowl of oatmeal that someone drops a little bit of nuclear waste into? Is it reasonable to conclude that the oatmeal is contaminated? I'd say yes, and I wouldn't think twice about whether that was a part-whole error. The same goes for the scenario being described here. You have plenty of easy reasons to get rid of answer choices A through D, and you can validate answer choice E with just a drop of interpretive flexibility (which is fine on a "most strongly supported" type of question). Pick E and run with it!
Let me know if that clears it up!