[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 for environment 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
- 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 pro-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.
- 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.