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EB1911 - Volume 01 - Page 001 - 1.svg This entry lacks etymological information. If you are familiar with the origin of this term, please add it to the page per etymology instructions. You can also discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈkætʃ.mənt/
  • Hyphenation: catch‧ment


catchment ‎(plural catchments)

  1. any structure or land feature which catches and holds water
    • 1998, Isotope Tracers in Catchment Hydrology (preface) by C. Kendall and J.J. McDonnell
      ...that streamflow generated during rainfall or snowmelt is derived primarily from water stored in the catchment prior to the event....
  2. collection of water such as with a catchment
    • 2015, BYU Magazine
      Every mountain in Petra has carved water channels in the indigenous stone that catch the seasonal erosion floods. Every building seems to be positioned to maximize water catchment.


catchment ‎(comparative more catchment, superlative most catchment)

  1. having the properties of collecting water
    • 1864, Reports from Commissioners by House of Commons, Parliament, Great Britain
      Do you think that there ought to be some board or some authority for each catchment basin, which must be appointed with adequate powers to prevent the pollution of streams?
    • 1889, Parliamentary Papers, House of Commons and Command, Volume 9
      Now let us come to this point: you are quite clear that serious evil exists in this union of navigation and drainage [...] And you are also clear that one obstacle is the taxation of the catchment area[...]?
    • 1890, Special Committee on the Irrigation and Reclamation of Arid Lands, United States Senate
      The catchment area is the slope of a great mountain range covered with fine forests, and there are many good reservoir sites.
    • 1998, Isotope Tracers in Catchment Hydrology (preface) by C. Kendall and J.J. McDonnell
      Catchment hydrology is more than just the study of water, or rocks, or biota -- it encompassses the physical and biogeochemical interactions that control the hydrology and biogeochemistry of the system.