Posted by Ellie McDaniel
26th October, 2020

Insights eco glossary Insights eco glossary

80% of adults are concerned about human-induced climate change, and studies suggest that this figure has increased during the global pandemic with 55% of people claiming to have become even more conscious about the environment. However, half of adults say that a lack of knowledge and understanding is a key barrier in preventing them from taking action. In fact, further research has revealed a climate-literacy gap. While 67% of adults claim to have a good understanding of climate change terms, only 41% can translate them correctly. To help bridge this gap we have created an eco-glossary to be shared by brands and consumers.

Eco-terminology glossary

Biodiversity: the variety of plant and animal life in a particular habitat.

Carbon Credit: a permit or certificate that provides the holder the right to emit a specified amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases. One credit permits the emission of a mass equal to one ton of carbon dioxide. These credits are often bought by organisations to offset or neutralise the emissions they emit.

Carbon Footprint: the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere as a result of the activities carried out by an individual, organisation or community.

Carbon Offsetting: an action that compensates for the emission of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Companies and individuals can carbon offset by funding projects that remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere or prevent them from being released in localised areas in order to compensate for emissions made elsewhere. This is often done by purchasing Carbon Credits.

Carbon Negative: the reduction of an individual or company carbon footprint to less than neutral. It has the net effect of removing more greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere than were originally emitted by that company or individual.

Carbon Neutral (Net Zero Carbon): to balance carbon dioxide emissions with carbon removal to the point of no net release of carbon dioxide. This is often achieved through Carbon Offsetting.

Circular Economy: to reduce waste by extracting the maximum value from items while in use, and regenerating those materials at the end of their life. Thereby reducing the amount of waste that ends up in landfill.

Climate Change: a long-term shift in global or regional climate patterns.

Climate Crisis: this incorporates global warming, climate change and the threat of highly dangerous, irreversible changes to the global climate.

Fast Fashion: inexpensive clothing produced rapidly by mass-market retailers in response to the latest trends.

Global Warming: a long-term increase in the temperature of the Earth's atmosphere. Research shows this has increased rapidly over the past century, primarily due to the increased levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.