pet·​ro·​chem·​i·​cal | \ ˌpe-trō-ˈke-mi-kəl \

Definition of petrochemical 

: a chemical isolated or derived from petroleum or natural gas

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Other Words from petrochemical

petrochemistry \ ˌpe-​trō-​ˈke-​mə-​strē \ noun

Examples of petrochemical in a Sentence

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This year, Total and Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Aramco, signed a $5 billion deal to build a large petrochemicals complex in the kingdom. Summer Said, WSJ, "Oil Industry Sticks With Saudi Arabia Through Khashoggi Scandal," 25 Oct. 2018 At least 10 large petrochemical plants are also close to the water. I Made Sentana, WSJ, "Indonesia Tsunami Death Toll Rises to 429 as Volcano Threat Remains," 25 Dec. 2018 Ruwais, where the vast desert of the Empty Quarter meets the waters of the Gulf, will soon become an oil-processing and petrochemicals hub., "A Mideast Energy Giant Seizes New Energy Future," 10 May 2018 In 2010, the Middle East was beginning to run out of the cheap natural gas that had transformed the region into a major petrochemicals hub. Katherine Blunt, San Antonio Express-News, "As gasoline demand wanes, oil industry looks to petrochemicals," 12 Mar. 2018 Appearing before the National Petroleum Council in Washington on Tuesday, Energy Secretary Rick Perry devoted much of his remarks to urging development of natural gas and petrochemical industries in Appalachian coal country. Matthew Daly, The Seattle Times, "US coal consumption drops to lowest level since 1979," 5 Dec. 2018 Steel bound for a multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant that Shell is building outside of Pittsburgh was held by U.S. Customs and Border Protection at a California port in June after quotas for Brazilian steel were filled. Inyoung Hwang, WSJ, "Shell CEO Considers New Natural-Gas Bet," 24 Sep. 2018 At the same time, the IEA said oil use for car fuel should peak in the mid-2020s—due to stronger fuel efficiency standards and the rise of electric vehicles—with demand then driven by petrochemicals, and fuel for trucks, planes and ships. Christopher Alessi, WSJ, "U.S. Expected to Produce Half of Global Oil and Gas Output by 2025," 12 Nov. 2018 Be sure the lube is paraben-free, petrochemical-free, glycerine-free, and does not contain any flavoring because these chemicals can cause irritation and infection. Gigi Engle, SELF, "7 Questions to Ask the Salesperson—and Yourself—Before Buying Your First Vibrator," 20 July 2018

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

1942, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

16 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for petrochemical

The first known use of petrochemical was in 1942

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English Language Learners Definition of petrochemical

: a chemical that is made from petroleum or natural gas

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