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The Word Of The Year Refers To Environmental Problems

What's yours word of the year? Collins Dictionary has selected their own. This year it's single-use, "a term that describes items whose unchecked proliferation are blamed for damaging the environment and affecting the food chain."

Single-use refers to products - often plastic - that are "made to be used once only’ before disposal. Images of plastic adrift in the most distant oceans, such as straws, bottles, and bags have led to a global campaign to reduce their use.

As stated, the word has seen a four-fold increase since 2013, with news stories and images such as those seen in the BBC’s Blue Planet II steeply raising public awareness of the issue.

The shortlist of the candidate words included the following terms: backstop, floss, gammon, gaslight, metoo, plogging, VAR, vegan, whitewash.

“This has been a year where awareness and often anger over a variety of issues has led to the rise of new words and the revitalisation and adaptation of old ones,” said head of language content Helen Newstead. “It’s clear from this year’s words of the year list that changes to our language are dictated as much by public concern as they are by sport, politics, and playground fads. The words in this year’s list perhaps highlight a world at extremes - at one end, serious social and political concerns, and at the other, more light-hearted activities.”

All shortlisted words are going to be included on, followed by future print editions of the dictionary.

In 2017 the Word of the Year went to the rising term of the broadcasting world fake news, whereas in 2016 the absolute winner was Brexit.


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