vast-, wast-

(Latin: waste, lay waste completely; from vastare, "to make empty, to lay waste", from vastus, "empty, waste, desert")

vastitude (s) (noun), vastitudes (pl)
1. Immensity and magnitude: James and the other people could not avoid seeing the vastitude of the missionary doctor's love for all humankind.
2. A great expanse or space: Sailing across the Pacific Ocean, Carol noted in her journal her impressions of the vastitude of this ocean.
vastly (adverb), more vastly, most vastly
To an exceedingly great extent or degree: Mayor Dawson and his staff had vastly underestimated the monetary resources of the city and so they had to borrow considerably more money than they had anticipated to complete the restoration of the city after the destructive storms.
vastness (s) (noun), vastnesses (pl)
1. To a great extent; immensity: The vastness of the pollutions in the Pacific Ocean after the tsunami in Japan extended as far as California in the U.S.
2. An immense magnitude or amount: The vastnesses of land slides from the mountains, which were caused by the abnormally heavy rains, resulted in the destruction of many lives and homes.
3. A significantly large amount: The vastness of the sums of money necessary to support military actions have affected the economies of many countries.
vasty (adjective), vastier, vastiest
A reference to something that is great or immense: Maureen joyfully said that her ice cream cone was the vastiest that she had ever eaten.
wastage (s) (noun), wastages (pl)
1. Anything which is lost by wear or overuse: Paul and the other farmers were concerned by the wastage of their fields that was resulting from the overproduction of crops instead of allowing the land to lie fallow.
2. Loss caused when something is worn, decays, or leaks: Isabel was dismayed by the wastage of her favorite pair of shoes.
waste (s) (noun), wastes (pl)
1. A failure to use something wisely, properly, fully, or to good effect: The waste of food at the restaurant disturbed Alison because she also worked at a Food Bank.
2. Unwanted or unusable items, remains, or household garbage: There were large bins of waste sitting by the side of the road waiting for the disposal truck to pick them up.
3. Contaminated water from domestic, industrial, or mining applications: The waste which supplied the Native Reserve was contaminated by run off from an adjoining mining project.
4. Rocky areas that are mined for a mineral, or ore, with insufficient mineral content to justify further processing: Jim, the old prospector, mined the waste hoping to recover particles of gold.
5. A place or region that has been destroyed or ruined: The city and surrounding suburbs were nothing but waste after the destruction by the bombings of the invaders.
waste (verb), wastes; wasted; wasting
1. To use, to consume, or to expend thoughtlessly or carelessly: Roberta's mother was always cautioning her not to waste food, reminding her daughter about hungry children in other parts of the world.
2. To cause someone to lose energy, strength, or vigor; to exhaust, tire, or enfeeble: The disease that Jim had significantly wasted his body to a deplorable condition.
3. To fail to take advantage of or to use for profit; to lose: It would be a shame to waste an opportunity to go to the Canadian islands for the holidays.
4. Slang: To kill, murder or to destroy completely: The gang leader, Dudley, threatened to waste the other gang if they did not stop stealing cars in his neighborhood.
5. Etymology: from Latin vastare, "to lay waste" from vastus, "empty, desolate, waste" then "devastate, ravage, ruin", from Anglo-French and Old Norse French waster, "to spoil, to ruin" (Old French guaster), altered by the influence of Frankish wostjan.
waste biomass (s) (noun), waste biomasses (pl)
A collective term for substances, including municipal sewage, manure, forestry and agricultural residues and some types of unusable industrial products: The municipal engineers studied the waste biomass to determine what could be recycled into safe products.
waste heat (s) (noun), waste heats (pl)
The portion of the energy input to a mechanical process that is rejected into the environment: There is something ironic about air conditioners that cool a person's home but which generate a lot of waste heat which is poured out into the environment.
waste heat recovery (s) (noun), waste heat recoveries (pl)
Any system or process that actively captures warmth which would otherwise be discharged into the environment, so that it can be used for other purposes: The use of the heat from exhaust gases to heat water is an example of waste heat recovery.
Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, WIPP (noun) (no plural)
The first underground repository in the United States licensed to permanently dispose of transuranic radioactive waste left from the research and production of nuclear weapons; located in the Chihuahuan Desert of southeastern New Mexico, USA: As an engineering student, Dallas wanted to visit the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant and discovered that he needed special governmental permission to do so.
wasteful (adjective), more wasteful, most wasteful
1. Tending to squander money or resources: Leaving one's computer running overnight or when a person is not at home is an example of wasteful use of electricity.
2. Relating to the destruction of a country, people, things, etc.; therefore, causing devastation: The wasteful damage caused by the typhoon required considerable recovery aid in the form of financial support and building supplies.
3. Descriptive of inefficient use of time, effort, and materials: Tzen's wasteful attitude about attending school or completing assignments was frustrating to his teachers and his parents who considered him to be a very bright student.
wastefully (adverb), more wastefully, most wastefully
1. A reference to using something in an extravagantly careless manner or to an unnecessary degree: Nancy and the other students of history at the university agreed that the more wastefully the aristocracy of the country acted, the more the general population would resent them.
2. Characteristic of useless expenses or consumptions: Charles wastefully spent his allowance as soon as he received it from his uncle and so he was always out of money before the end of the month.
wastefulness (s) (noun) (usually no plural)
1. Useless or profitless activity: Although Karl was accused of spending wastefulness of his time by going down to the river and watching it flow by, he disagreed because he felt it was always a very soothing activity.
2. Using or consuming thoughtlessly or carelessly: The wastefulness of running an air conditioner when no one is home was the subject of a column in the newspaper on energy conservation.
3. The act or practice of expending what is valuable without need or proper use: "Clear cut logging" is considered by some to be an example of wastefulness because no consideration is given to the usefulness of smaller trees, brush, etc. which could also be harvested.
waster (s) (noun), wasters (pl)
1. Someone who dissipates resources self-indulgently: Count Ashton was a genuine waster because he was spending the family fortune with no thought of the long term needs of the estate he was to inherit.
2. An object that has been spoiled during manufacture, especially a ceramic piece: The gift shop had a special section of waster, or factory seconds, that had slight imperfections during their productions.
3. A spendthrift or seeker of self-gratifying desires: Ashley was a charming waster who was always in need of money and who frequently borrowed money from his friends.