sus·​tain·​able | \sə-ˈstā-nə-bəl \

Definition of sustainable 

1 : capable of being sustained

2a : of, relating to, or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged sustainable techniques sustainable agriculture

b : of or relating to a lifestyle involving the use of sustainable methods sustainable society

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Other Words from sustainable

sustainability \sə-​ˌstā-​nə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
sustainably \sə-​ˈstā-​nə-​blē \ adverb

Examples of sustainable in a Sentence

a line of argument that is probably not sustainable in a public forum against skilled debaters has no sustainable claim to the property without a deed or some other document

Recent Examples on the Web

Major iron ore producers include big miners such as Vale SA, Rio Tinto PLC and BHP Group Ltd. Iron ore initially held up even as steel prices slid: Mills were buying more ore, demand traders figured would prove sustainable, say analysts. Rhiannon Hoyle, WSJ, "China’s Steel Glut Sinks Iron Ore," 27 Nov. 2018 They should be made for our own good, and to correct a nationwide pattern of environmental design that is not sustainable, resilient, or healthy. Alex Baca, Vox, "I work in urban planning. Now Amazon’s coming to my city.," 20 Nov. 2018 Even better, the jacket is part of Everlane’s ReNew line that replaces traditional synthetic fabric with an extra-cozy sustainable fabric that’s made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. Lindsey Murray, Good Housekeeping, "Everlane's ReNew Puffer With a 38,000 Person Waitlist Is Back in Stock," 29 Oct. 2018 Also select sustainable; overfishing causes the decline of certain fish populations, which isn't good for the ocean or you. Woman's Day, "Everything You Need to Know About Picking Out and Preparing Fish," 19 Sep. 2018 Teleflora, the flower delivery company, has recently made a huge push to incorporate succulents and other sustainable blooms into its designs, both to stay on-trend and so that people could enjoy their bouquets longer. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "These Succulent Bouquets Will Convince You To Treat Yo'Self To Some Flowers," 7 Aug. 2018 The fuel, powering a 747 flying from Orlando, Florida to London's Gatwick Airport, makes the case for a commercially-viable flight that is also economically sustainable. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Virgin 747 Completes Transatlantic Flight With Fuel Made Partly From Industrial Waste," 5 Oct. 2018 DeWine argues that calling for a work requirement and incentives for people to be healthy means that the system would be more accountable and sustainable. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: GOP candidates caught in a bind on Medicaid," 13 July 2018 In spring 2017, the aquarium eliminated all single-use plastic foodware, replacing disposable products with reusable, compostable or more sustainable recycling options. Lorraine Mirabella,, "More eateries, businesses do away with plastic straws," 13 July 2018

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

1924, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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5 Dec 2018

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The first known use of sustainable was in 1924

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English Language Learners Definition of sustainable

: able to be used without being completely used up or destroyed

: involving methods that do not completely use up or destroy natural resources

: able to last or continue for a long time

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