thermal pollution


: the discharge of heated liquid (such as wastewater from a factory) into natural waters at a temperature harmful to the environment

Examples of thermal pollution in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The researchers say underground climate change has been linked to shifts in plant growth and thermal pollution of groundwaters. Margaret Osborne, Smithsonian Magazine, 20 July 2023 One form of pollution is thermal pollution, Whittie said. Erika Butler,, 27 Nov. 2019

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'thermal pollution.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1966, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of thermal pollution was in 1966

Dictionary Entries Near thermal pollution

Cite this Entry

“Thermal pollution.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

thermal pollution

: the release of heated liquid (as water used by a factory) into a natural body of water at a temperature harmful to the environment

More from Merriam-Webster on thermal pollution

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