Cambridge Word of the Year 2019: upcycling

The word upcycling has been chosen by Cambridge Dictionary fans as Word of the Year 2019.

And its meaning?

Cambridge define the noun upcycling as:

  • the activity of making new furniture, objects, etc. out of old or used things or waste material 

and the verb upcycle as:

  • to make new furniture, objects, etc. out of old or used things or waste material

The Cambridge Dictionary editors considered upcycling as a term for addition to the Dictionary in 2011 after noticing a spike in searches for it.

“We think that our fans resonated with upcycling not as a word in itself but with the positive idea behind it,” says Wendalyn Nichols, Publishing Manager of the Cambridge Dictionary. “Stopping the progression of climate change, let alone reversing it, can seem impossible at times. Upcycling is a concrete action a single human being can take to make a difference.”

Other similarly green words on the shortlist for Word of the Year 2019 were carbon sink, compostable and preservation.

Cambridge Dictionary’s Word of the Year 2019

Contributed by Joe Essberger | November 2019
Joe Essberger is founder of TEFL.net and EnglishClub and has taught EFL in Europe and Asia.

One Comment

  • Rita Daniela says:

    I think that it’s a very good idea to recycle wastes to make them new things or objects that we can use every day in our life.

    For example, old boxes that we don’t use from a lot of time, could be used as containers for every thing we need to preserve by atmospheriques phenonenoms. Another use we could make of them is to use old boxes to chill something before a meal for a short period of time and then recycling them we will able to preserve our health.

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