per·ma·frost | \ˈpər-mə-ˌfrȯst \

Definition of permafrost 

: a permanently frozen layer at variable depth below the surface in frigid regions of a planet (such as earth)

Examples of permafrost in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

As a warming climate thaws this permafrost, more and more of the older carbon will be broken down by microbes and released as carbon dioxide or methane, with the potential to greatly warm the planet. Chris Mooney, Anchorage Daily News, "Ancient carbon is coming from Arctic soil. It might be fine, but it might be terrible.," 1 Mar. 2018 If the active layer of insulation is disturbed during construction (i.e., trenching), permafrost could be vulnerable to thermokarst and subsidence during the summer due to exposure to higher temperatures. Author: Elwood Brehmer, Anchorage Daily News, "Army Corps releases final EIS for in-state Alaska gasline," 24 June 2018 Unlike a hurricane or a flood, the loss of permafrost is silent, rarely dramatic, and never fatal. Ned Rozell, Anchorage Daily News, "Warming in the north continues as predicted," 23 June 2018 And in the Arctic, the threat looms of impermanent permafrost from which climate-altering methane will bubble free. Rob Nixon, Smithsonian, "Climate Change Can Also Transform Language," 23 Mar. 2018 Like most cities in the Russian Arctic, Norilsk was custom built for permafrost. Bridget Alex, Discover Magazine, "Something Stirs: What Will Happen as Permafrost Thaws?," 15 May 2018 In line with that mission, each of the nine galleries in 007 Elements—floating cubes within the permafrost of the mountain—is dedicated to an aspect of filmmaking. Bridget Hallinan, Condé Nast Traveler, "New James Bond Museum '007 Elements' Is on Top of a Mountain in Austria," 14 June 2018 In reality, specimens found in the thawing permafrost are... less cute. Alessandra Potenza, The Verge, "Digging mammoths in the Arctic isn’t as pretty and sci-fi as this new Lego set suggests," 21 May 2018 However, Claverie believes there is low risk of a global pandemic from these diseases in permafrost. Bridget Alex, Discover Magazine, "Something Stirs: What Will Happen as Permafrost Thaws?," 15 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'permafrost.' 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 permafrost

1943, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for permafrost

permanent + frost

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Last Updated

20 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for permafrost

The first known use of permafrost was in 1943

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English Language Learners Definition of permafrost

: a layer of soil that is always frozen in very cold regions of the world

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Comments on permafrost

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


to reject or criticize sharply

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