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biodegradable

[bahy-oh-di-grey-duh-buh l]
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adjective
  1. capable of decaying through the action of living organisms: biodegradable paper; biodegradable detergent.

Origin of biodegradable

First recorded in 1960–65; bio- + degrade + -able
Related formsbi·o·de·grad·a·bil·i·ty, nounnon·bi·o·de·grad·a·ble, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for biodegradable

biodegradable

adjective
  1. (of sewage constituents, packaging material, etc) capable of being decomposed by bacteria or other biological means
Derived Formsbiodegradation (ˌbaɪəʊˌdɛɡrəˈdeɪʃən), nounbiodegradability (ˌbaɪəʊˌdɛɡreɪdɪˈbɪlɪtɪ), noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for biodegradable

adj.

also bio-degradable, 1960, from bio- + degrade + -able.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

biodegradable in Medicine

biodegradable

(bī′ō-dĭ-grādə-bəl)
adj.
  1. Capable of being decomposed by biological agents, especially bacteria.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

biodegradable in Science

biodegradable

[bī′ō-dĭ-grādə-bəl]
  1. Capable of being decomposed by the action of biological agents, especially bacteria.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

biodegradable in Culture

biodegradable

[(beye-oh-di-gray-duh-buhl)]

Material that, left to itself, will be decomposed by natural processes.

Note

The use of biodegradable packaging is supposed to reduce the volume of waste in landfills.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.