un·​sus·​tain·​able | \ˌən-sə-ˈstā-nə-bəl \

Definition of unsustainable 

: not capable of being prolonged or continued : not sustainable unsustainable agricultural practices unsustainable growth

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Other Words from unsustainable

unsustainability \ ˌən-​sə-​ˌstā-​nə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
unsustainably \ ˌən-​sə-​ˈstā-​nə-​blē \ adverb
an unsustainably high rate of growth

Examples of unsustainable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

So while many low-carb lovers may be tempted to take things to the next level, the carnivore diet implies that 0% of your calories come from dietary carbohydrates — a practice that's highly unsustainable for the long haul. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "What You Need to Know About the Carnivore Diet," 7 Sep. 2018 But by stretching enforcement to cruel and unsustainable levels, the Trump administration has forced liberals to confront their own dubious role in the never-ending battle over who gets to stay in America. Benjamin Hart, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump’s Draconian Immigration Policies Highlight Obama’s Missteps," 20 June 2018 Its purpose was to create some breathing room for an increasingly costly and unsustainable system of private health insurance by imposing a universal mandate to purchase coverage, supported by government subsidies. New York Times, "Readers Respond to the 6.24.18 Issue," 5 July 2018 But hops are expensive and unsustainable, according to the university press release. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "Scientists Brew a Hoppy Beer Without the Hops," 21 Mar. 2018 But this time, a perfect storm is brewing that has made this process even more unsustainable and even dangerous. Curtis R. Ryan, Washington Post, "Why Jordanians are protesting," 4 June 2018 During the last crisis, easy credit led home prices to rise at an unsustainable pace, leading marginally qualified borrowers to stretch themselves thin. Paul Kupiec And, WSJ, "The Government Creates Another Housing Bubble," 31 May 2018 Our power customers have expressed serious concerns that BPA’s recent pattern of rising costs and rates is unsustainable. George Melloan, WSJ, "Pruitt Leaves a Proud Legacy at the EPA," 11 July 2018 The annual expense — roughly $7,700 for water, on top of the $4,300 billed by the management company — was unsustainable. Nicole Miller-coleman, sandiegouniontribune.com, "As attention on Vinduino grows, so does its market," 7 July 2018

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

circa 1677, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

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The first known use of unsustainable was circa 1677

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