[en-vahy-ruh n-muh nt, -vahy-ern-]
- the aggregate of surrounding things, conditions, or influences; surroundings; milieu.
- Ecology. the air, water, minerals, organisms, and all other external factors surrounding and affecting a given organism at any time.
- the social and cultural forces that shape the life of a person or a population.
- Computers. the hardware or software configuration, or the mode of operation, of a computer system: In a time-sharing environment, transactions are processed as they occur.
- an indoor or outdoor setting that is characterized by the presence of environmental art that is itself designed to be site-specific.
Origin of environment
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
1. locale, environs. Environment, milieu, ambiance, setting, surroundings all refer to what makes up the atmosphere or background against which someone or something is seen. Environment may refer either to actual physical surroundings or to social or cultural background factors: an environment of crime and grinding poverty. Milieu, encountered most often in literary writing, refers to intangible aspects of the environment: an exhilarating milieu of artistic ferment and innovation. Ambiance applies to the atmosphere of the surroundings, their mood or tone: an ambiance of ease and elegance. Setting suggests a background that sets something off: a perfect setting for the emerald. Surroundings alludes specifically to the physical aspects of the environment: awoke in strange surroundings; blend in with her surroundings.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for environmental
What they believe impacts economic policy, foreign policy, education policy, environmental policy, you name it.The Evangelical Apocalypse Is All Your Fault
January 4, 2015
The island faces an environmental challenge of huge proportions.Goodbye, Bahamas. Hello, Havana!
December 18, 2014
It has allowed the project to bypass normal due diligence and environmental impact assessments.China’s Nicaragua Canal Could Spark a New Central America Revolution
November 30, 2014
Now, 42 percent believe that it is innate and 37 percent hold that it is environmental—hardly a massive shift in popular opinion.The Problematic Hunt for a ‘Gay Gene’
November 20, 2014
The pipeline also has environmental consequences on a larger scale.The Pipeline From Hell: There’s No Good Reason to Build Keystone XL
November 15, 2014
But in the case of America, the environmental cause was absent.An Essay On The American Contribution And The Democratic Idea
What's that to do with this response to environmental challenge thing?Voyage To Eternity
But environmental influence is more than a mouth-filling phrase.Child Versus Parent
These damages from without we class roughly as environmental.Applied Psychology for Nurses
Mary F. Porter
The crabs and worms conceivably are two of the environmental features inhospitable to the rats.
- external conditions or surroundings, esp those in which people live or work
- ecology the external surroundings in which a plant or animal lives, which tend to influence its development and behaviour
- the state of being environed; encirclement
- computing an operating system, program, or integrated suite of programs that provides all the facilities necessary for a particular applicationa word-processing environment
Word Origin and History for environmental
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- The totality of circumstances surrounding an organism or group of organisms, especially the combination of external physical conditions that affect and influence the growth, development, and survival of organisms.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
- All of the biotic and abiotic factors that act on an organism, population, or ecological community and influence its survival and development. Biotic factors include the organisms themselves, their food, and their interactions. Abiotic factors include such items as sunlight, soil, air, water, climate, and pollution. Organisms respond to changes in their environment by evolutionary adaptations in form and behavior.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.