pol·​lut·​ant | \ pə-ˈlü-tᵊnt How to pronounce pollutant (audio) \

Definition of pollutant

: something that pollutes

Examples of pollutant in a Sentence

filtered the pollutants out of the water
Recent Examples on the Web Such systems cannot remove nitrogen, the main pollutant of concern. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, 5 May 2022 In some cases, their equipment measured this small particulate pollutant at nearly twice the levels picked up by the corresponding EPA system. Joan Meiners, The Arizona Republic, 23 Mar. 2022 Yet industry watchdogs like Marcie Keever at environmental advocacy group Friends of the Earth caution that LNG is merely a distraction and yet another significant pollutant. CNN, 21 Apr. 2022 Air quality in the West barely meets the EPA’s standard for one type of air pollutant. NBC News, 22 Mar. 2022 Other speakers said the county should install methane capture systems at landfills, noting that reducing methane, a short-term but potent climate pollutant, can have immediate benefits in slowing climate change. Deborah Sullivan Brennan, San Diego Union-Tribune, 26 Mar. 2022 Ozone is not an equal opportunity pollutant—some plants are highly susceptible to the toxic gas and others less so. Jim Robbins, Wired, 16 Oct. 2021 It’s a pollutant emitted by cars, power plants, and refineries. Jennifer Clare Ball, Wired, 25 Feb. 2022 Levels of particulate matter, a pollutant made of tiny particles of dust, dirt, and smoke, among other things, were ten times higher than in the community less than 10 miles north up the highway elsewhere in San Diego County. Time, 24 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of pollutant

1892, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About pollutant

Time Traveler for pollutant

Time Traveler

The first known use of pollutant was in 1892

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near pollutant




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for pollutant

Last Updated

14 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pollutant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pollutant. Accessed 26 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for pollutant


pol·​lut·​ant | \ pə-ˈlü-tᵊnt How to pronounce pollutant (audio) \

Kids Definition of pollutant

: a substance that makes something (as air or water) impure and often unsafe


pol·​lut·​ant | \ pə-ˈlüt-ᵊnt How to pronounce pollutant (audio) \

Medical Definition of pollutant

: something that pollutes

More from Merriam-Webster on pollutant

Nglish: Translation of pollutant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pollutant for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Great Words for Scrabble

  • scrabble tiles that read scrabble quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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