waste definition, meaning - what is waste in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

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English definition of “waste”

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waste

noun uk   us   /weɪst/

waste noun (BAD USE)

B1 [S or U] an unnecessary or wrong use of money, substances, time, energy, abilities, etc.: That meeting achieved absolutely nothing - it was a complete waste of time. She's been unemployed for two years and it's such a waste of her talents. My mother couldn't bear waste - she always made us eat everything on our plates.go to waste to not be used, eaten, etc.: "Go on, finish off this tart, Paul." "Well, it seems a shame to let it go to waste."
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waste noun (UNWANTED MATTER)

B1 [C or U] unwanted matter or material of any type, especially what is left after useful substances or parts have been removed: This city produces 20 million tons of household waste each year. He opposes any kind of nuclear waste being dumped at sea. Millions of gallons of untreated human waste (= excrement) flow into the river every day. Oil spills are common, as is the dumping of toxic industrial wastes. The Japanese recycle more than half of their waste paper.
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waste noun (EMPTY GROUND)

waste ground an area of ground in or near a city that is not built on, used to grow crops, or used in any way: His body had been dumped in an area of waste ground just outside the city.
See also
wastes [plural] large areas of land that are not used to grow crops and have few living animals or plants: the Arctic wastes of northern Siberia

waste

verb [T] uk   us   /weɪst/

waste verb [T] (USE BADLY)

B1 to use too much of something or use something badly when there is a limited amount of it: You waste a lot of water by having a bath instead of a shower. Come on, let's get started - we've wasted enough time already. Don't waste your money on me, love, keep it for yourself.
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waste verb [T] (KILL)

US slang to kill someone
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of waste from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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