greenhouse gas


: any of various gaseous compounds (such as carbon dioxide or methane) that absorb infrared radiation, trap heat in the atmosphere, and contribute to the greenhouse effect
Water vapor is an important gas for the study of climate and weather because of its role as a natural greenhouse gas as well as its relationship to clouds and precipitation.Mohi Kumar
Scientists now recognize tropospheric ozone—a component of smog—as a greenhouse gas as well as an eye and lung irritant.Science News
While it may not be possible to eliminate all greenhouse gas emissions, it is possible to offset some of the emissions that do still occur. Offsetting involves supporting projects that reduce or sequester greenhouse gas emissions in another location.Tyson Miller
Livestock emit 14.5 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions each year. Most of that is from cows.Marley Walker

Examples of greenhouse gas in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The largest-ever climate meeting will happen on what’s likely to end up as the hottest year on record and as extreme weather events made worse by greenhouse gas emissions warming the planet wreak havoc on every continent. Laura Millan, Fortune, 28 Nov. 2023 Globally, the corporate sector accounts for almost 70% of greenhouse gas emissions, and a real impact on emission reductions will only be possible with a global effort to push these businesses in the right direction. Sumant Sinha, Forbes, 28 Nov. 2023 Critics, however, note that greenhouse gas emissions in the Earth’s atmosphere have continued to soar since 1995, when these meetings began. Washington Post, 27 Nov. 2023 The analyst notes the company’s commitment to achieve ‘net zero’ greenhouse gas emissions by 2042. WSJ, 21 Nov. 2023 Back in 2018, United Nations climate experts published a roadmap for meeting the goals of the Paris agreement that included reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by the middle of the century. Justine Calma, The Verge, 20 Nov. 2023 Future sea-level rise mainly depends on future ice melt, which depends on future greenhouse gas emissions. E&e News, Scientific American, 20 Nov. 2023 Expanding access to renewable energy, for example, could both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and also improve climate resilience. Li Cohen, CBS News, 15 Nov. 2023 One way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is through molecular recycling, which breaks down hard-to-recycle plastic waste for new products. John Kell, Fortune, 15 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'greenhouse gas.' 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

1975, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of greenhouse gas was in 1975

Dictionary Entries Near greenhouse gas

Cite this Entry

“Greenhouse gas.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

greenhouse gas

: any of various gases (as carbon dioxide or methane) that absorb infrared radiation, trap heat in the atmosphere, and contribute to the greenhouse effect
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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