Definition of dioxin in English:



mass noun
  • 1A highly toxic compound produced as a by-product in some manufacturing processes, notably herbicide production and paper bleaching. It is a serious and persistent environmental pollutant.

    A heterocyclic organochlorine compound; alternative name: 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzoparadioxin(abbreviation TCDD); chemical formula: C₁₂H₄O₂Cl₄

    • ‘Poly-vinyl chloride, or PVC, is targeted as a primary producer of dioxin.’
    • ‘A 1995 study shows that the amount of dioxin produced during waste incineration depends more on the method of incineration than on the chlorine content of the waste.’
    • ‘The by-product of this process, dioxin, is thought to be linked to cervical cancer and also has harmful effects on the environment.’
    • ‘Some commentators recommend avoiding fatty fish because more PCBs, DDT, dioxin, and other chemical compounds will be found in the fat.’
    • ‘Some of the herbicide contained dioxin, one of the world's deadliest poisons.’
    • ‘That view is shared by the usually mild US Environmental Protection Agency following their extensive three-year study that proved dioxin to be more toxic than had originally been believed.’
    • ‘Arsenic and dioxin in the herbicides are expected to pose a health threat long into the future.’
    • ‘But dioxin and related toxic chemicals are detectable in the body years after exposure.’
    • ‘In addition, the manufacture and incineration of PVC releases dioxin, a known human carcinogen, into the environment.’
    • ‘FDA has since recommended that clays used as desiccants in feed processing be tested for dioxin.’
    • ‘Cigarettes contain many pesticide residues, some chlorine chemicals that when burned produce dioxin, a known human carcinogen and cause of a host of diseases.’
    • ‘He discussed how the manufacture of PVC creates the unwanted byproduct of dioxin, a potent carcinogen.’
    • ‘The Jiading factory will be able to burn at 850 degrees centigrade, hot enough to destroy dioxin, a poisonous chemical compound found in some waste, said the engineer on that project.’
    • ‘The Stockholm Convention, to which Australia is a signatory, bans, or seeks to eliminate 12 of the worst organic pollutants including dioxin.’
    • ‘Activists also charge that inappropriate operation of incinerators creates not only air pollution but also toxic dioxin.’
    • ‘No trees will be cut for Whole Earth and no chlorine used in paper making (thus releasing no dioxin into the environment).’
    • ‘The amounts of dioxin in the environment are very low.’
    • ‘Thousands of ducks and a million duck eggs have been destroyed after the toxic chemical dioxin was found in eggs at a supermarket, the government said yesterday.’
    • ‘But until two years ago, the pleasures of Zamami were spoiled by the presence of a garbage incinerator that spewed highly toxic dioxin into the atmosphere.’
    • ‘The pulp and paper industry has historically discharged dioxin and other environmental toxins into rivers and streams.’
    1. 1.1count noun Any of the class of compounds to which dioxin belongs.
      • ‘He said that when you burn any organic matter, which contains chlorine and organic carbon, you get dioxins.’
      • ‘What if there's a level of dioxins, like TCDD in that?’
      • ‘They have excavated more than 100,000 cubic metres of fill contaminated with heavy metals, hydrocarbons and dioxins.’
      • ‘Exposure to dangerous chemicals called dioxins can cause a rare form of acne called chloracne.’
      • ‘Other residents will just burn the rubbish in their garden spreading dioxins and other noxious chemicals throughout the countryside.’


Early 20th century: from di- ‘two’ + ox- ‘oxygen’ + -in.