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Effluent comes from the Latin verb effluere, "to flow out". In an older meaning, an effluent was a stream flowing out of a river or lake. But nowadays effluent almost always means wastes that pour into our water and air. Liquid factory waste, smoke, and raw sewage can all be called effluents. An effluent filter keeps treated waste flowing out of a septic tank from clogging up its drainage pipes.
Definition of effluent
: something that flows out: such asa : an outflowing branch of a main stream or lakeb : waste material (such as smoke, liquid industrial refuse, or sewage) discharged into the environment especially when serving as a pollutant
Examples of effluent in a Sentence
The factory has been accused of discharging effluent into the river.
Recent Examples of effluent from the Web
Goodmann agreed that the computer modeling for the plan was flawed, but also said the numbers were showing effluent from sewage treatment plants — not farms — as the more significant problem.
Launched in 1988, the plant today treats 37 percent of Tijuana’s sewage, but its effluent has failed to comply with Mexico’s coastal emissions standards since 2015.
Livestock effluent has also been entering waterways and raising bacteria counts to unsafe levels.
Across the nation, once-pristine waterways have become contaminated by farm effluent.
On Jan. 4, 2000, a float switch clogged with debris, causing a false high reading that delayed the restart of the plant after high vibration had shut down an effluent pump.
The same cleansing properties cannot be said for the river itself, whose waters are poisoned by millions of gallons of industrial effluents and raw sewage every day.
The lagoon itself has also been seriously polluted by the enormous amount of effluent discharged from these ships.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'effluent'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of effluent
EFFLUENT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of effluent for English Language Learners
: liquid (such as sewage or industrial chemicals) that is released as waste
Seen and Heard
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