green light

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green light

1. verb To permit someone or something to proceed. Likened to the green light of a traffic signal. Do you think the production company will green light our film?
2. noun Permission to proceed with some action or task. We're just waiting to get the green light from our managers before we release the latest software update.
See also: green, light
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

green light, the

Permission to go ahead, as in The chief gave us the green light for starting this project. This term originated in the late 1800s for the signal used by railroads to indicate that a train could proceed. It was transferred to more general use in the first half of the 1900s.
See also: green
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

green light

permission to go ahead with a project.
The green light referred to is the traffic signal indicating that traffic is free to move forward. Red and green lights were in use from the late 19th century in railway signals, but this figurative use of green light appears to date from the mid 20th century.
1997 New Scientist Zemin even got the green light to buy nuclear power plants.
See also: green, light
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

green light

n. the signal to go ahead with something; the okay. (see also go-ahead, high sign.) When we get the green light, we’ll start.
See also: green, light
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
What happened instead was that the red light stayed on when the gear was supposedly retracted but the green lights no longer came on at all when the gear was in the extended position.
MIDDLESBROUGH Mayor Ray Mallon wants to stop Britain becoming a country saturated with alcohol (Calls Over Cheap Booze, 22.09.09) then, in the next day's Gazette, we read of another shop -a new convenience store opening in Middlesbrough - being granted an off-licence for alcohol sales (Green Light For Booze Licence).
The probe has already heard that the bus driver had a green light and is examining why the Luas kept going.
Three green lights means the organisation has met or exceeded the required standard.
The wire mesh will also be fitted on green lights in nearby Lanark and Hamilton.
In the third quarter, there were 27 green lights and 49 reds, signifying unsatisfactory performance.
Campaigners who support the idea say green lights could be put on fruit and vegetables with chocolate, sweets and crisps labelled red.
Evidently, these primates could be taught the rules about red and green lights.
Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Green Lights Program.
The private sector-based ECSC "ReElectrification of American Business" campaign is joining with ongoing government efforts to promote energy efficiency, including the Energy Star Building and Green Lights Partnership and the Green Lights Program sponsored by the U.S.
The brewery received plaudits for its membership in the Green Lights Program, a five-year project designed to reduce the amount of energy consumer by businesses throughout the country.
It may sound like a too-good-to-be-true scheme, but it's the basis of the federal Environmental Protection Agency's Green Lights Program.
The City of Houston expanded the EPA Green Lights Program by executive order of the mayor to include not only lighting but all major energy consuming equipment and factors in the city's facilities.
This article consists of excerpts from the report Establishing a Green Lights Revolving Fund, published by Public Technology, Inc.'s Urban Consortium Energy Task Force, and is used with permission.