greenhouse gas

noun

Definition of 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

First Known Use of greenhouse gas

1975, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about greenhouse gas

Time Traveler for greenhouse gas

Time Traveler

The first known use of greenhouse gas was in 1975

See more words from the same year

Statistics for greenhouse gas

Cite this Entry

“Greenhouse gas.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/greenhouse%20gas. Accessed 24 Jan. 2021.

Comments on greenhouse gas

What made you want to look up greenhouse gas? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!