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ex·​trac·​tive ik-ˈstrak-tiv How to pronounce extractive (audio)
: of, relating to, or involving extraction
: tending toward or resulting in withdrawal of natural resources by extraction with no provision for replenishment
extractive agriculture
: capable of being extracted
extractively adverb


2 of 2


: something extracted or extractable : extract

Examples of extractive in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
But such exploitation wasn’t an extractive, one-way street, the data suggests. Paige Madison, Discover Magazine, 18 Dec. 2023 There are debates about responses to climate change, pitting the pure economic value of extractive development against the modest sustainable subsistence tradition. Sara Miller Llana, The Christian Science Monitor, 11 Dec. 2023 For years, pressures have been mounting from extractive industries in Namibia and Angola, still recovering from a hideous 27-year civil war, which threaten the lakes and rivers that supply the Okavango with water. Alex Postman, Condé Nast Traveler, 1 Apr. 2024 Native people from across the West came to pray with Apache Stronghold: not only for Oak Flat, but for their own lands that are threatened by extractive industries. The Arizona Republic, 29 Feb. 2024 Labor and climate justice have historically been framed in opposition, but the exploitation of our environment and the exploitation of workers are inextricably linked by the extractive practices of the same companies. Carmiel Banasky, Variety, 28 Oct. 2023 And that’s where the IPCA – and a conservation economy – come in as an alternative to extractive industries and as a future for him and his children. Sara Miller Llana, The Christian Science Monitor, 11 Dec. 2023 Millions died during his extractive reign, and ever since, the rainforest has rarely known peace. Ross Andersen, The Atlantic, 5 Dec. 2023 Major roads and railways often lead to the coasts, a legacy of extractive colonialism, which inhibits trade between countries. Declan Walsh, New York Times, 27 Oct. 2023
Since passage of Section 1504, 30 other countries have passed similar disclosure rules for the extractives sector. Kate Bateman, Foreign Affairs, 7 Feb. 2017 The new NordShield Crisp is essentially a type of linen treatment derived from wood extractives that adds a smooth, invisible molecular layer over bedclothes to reduce linting and deterioration. Demetrius Simms, Robb Report, 15 May 2023 Its eco-friendly composition is made possible by the use of only the purest plant extractives and essential oils, which are renowned for their potent properties. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 22 Apr. 2023 If that sale is finalized, domestic companies would for the first time in Nigeria’s history own more oil leases than international ones, according to the Stakeholder Democracy Network, which focuses on the impact of the extractives industry in the Niger Delta. Rachel Chason, Washington Post, 27 Mar. 2023 Given that scientists from every corner of the globe agree that the world has an ever-shortening window to curb emissions, allowing the extractive industries an easier path to commodify the Earth is extremely alarming. Nick Martin, The New Republic, 10 Jan. 2020 At the central government level, Chinese leaders for years have trumpeted their commitment to shift to green growth after relying for decades on low-value manufacturing and resource-extractive industries that caused thick smog and polluted soil. Gerry Shih, Washington Post, 20 Nov. 2019 In reality, multibillion-dollar extractive industries—and the carbon-spewing corporations of the Global North—bear far more blame than most individuals. Sam Adler-Bell, The New Republic, 24 Sep. 2019 Among the findings presented in the 1,200-page document, the Canadian government pinpointed extractive industries and man camps as hotbeds of violence. Nick Martin, The New Republic, 15 Oct. 2019

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'extractive.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1810, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of extractive was in 1599

Dictionary Entries Near extractive

Cite this Entry

“Extractive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/extractive. Accessed 24 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


1 of 2 adjective
ex·​trac·​tive ik-ˈstrak-tiv, ˈek-ˌ How to pronounce extractive (audio)
: of, relating to, or involving extraction
extractive processes


2 of 2 noun
: something extracted or extractable : extract
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