fossil fuel


Definition of fossil fuel 

: a fuel (such as coal, oil, or natural gas) formed in the earth from plant or animal remains

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Other Words from fossil fuel

fossil-fueled \ ˈfä-​səl-​ˌfyü(-​ə)ld \ adjective

Examples of fossil fuel in a Sentence

oil and other fossil fuels

Recent Examples on the Web

Just last week, the US Geological Survey released a study saying that fossil fuels from federal lands (including offshore oil drilling) contribute to nearly a quarter of the US' carbon emissions. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Trump admin. approves seismic tests for Atlantic offshore oil drilling," 2 Dec. 2018 This is also a key concern for Elizabeth Yeampierre, a New York attorney and climate justice leader who spent her childhood in a community exposed to high levels of air pollution from nearby fossil fuel industries. Sarah Hurtes, Harper's BAZAAR, "Women Who Risk Everything to Defend the Environment," 30 Nov. 2018 The delay on the cap would in theory help move France from fossil fuels, which Macron wants to do to fight global warming, and toward renewables without increasing the price of energy too much. Sylvie Corbet, The Seattle Times, "France’s Macron tries to ease popular anger over gas prices," 27 Nov. 2018 As the world warms from the burning of fossil fuels, the globe will see both more extremely intense storms like Mangkhut and wetter storms like Florence, Vecchi said. Seth Borenstein, Fox News, "US hurricane, Asian typhoon: 1 brings water, the other, wind," 16 Sep. 2018 The approach of Macron’s fuel tax increases in January, meant to wean the French off fossil fuels, has caused things to snap. Elaine Ganley, The Seattle Times, "Violent protests in France reveal a hard-to-heal fracture," 4 Dec. 2018 Globally, there has been a slowdown in financing new projects mining coal, considered one of the dirtiest fossil fuels. Rhiannon Hoyle, WSJ, "Battered Indian Energy Giant Digs In With Scaled-Back Australian Mine," 29 Nov. 2018 At at time when the U.S. is seeking to revive its coal industry, Herdan argued the world should be moving away from the fossil fuel. Jonathan Gilbert,, "A Greener Future Starts With Natural Gas, World Energy Chiefs Say," 16 June 2018 The fossil fuels account for 20 percent of Wyoming's economy, more than any other state, and the industry's recent weakness has saddled the state with a $500 million deficit. Mead Gruver, The Christian Science Monitor, "Wyoming tries to attract blockchain business," 23 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fossil fuel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fossil fuel

1759, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

11 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for fossil fuel

The first known use of fossil fuel was in 1759

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More Definitions for fossil fuel

fossil fuel


English Language Learners Definition of fossil fuel

: a fuel (such as coal, oil, or natural gas) that is formed in the earth from dead plants or animals

More from Merriam-Webster on fossil fuel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fossil fuel Encyclopedia article about fossil fuel

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