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Climate change jargon buster

Climate change jargon buster

Often confused by some of the terms used to describe climate change or the climate crisis? Try our jargon buster for terms often used to talk about climate change, living greener, and what we can do about it.

Active travel

Making journeys by physically active means, like walking or cycling.


The ‘diversity of all life on Earth’ including animals, plants, fungi and microorganisms. It includes the complex relationships between all of these and their habitats and surroundings. We are all interconnected and rely on biodiversity for our health, our food, and the air we breathe.

Carbon footprint

The total amount of greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide and methane) that are generated by your actions.

Graphic showing item re-use

CO2 equivalent

Carbon footprints are typically measured in tons of CO2 equivalent (tCO2eq). It is often too difficult to calculate exact emissions due to the various types of greenhouse gases processes and activities produce. It’s not just just carbon dioxide, there is also methane, nitrous oxide, and others. Translating the warming effect of various greenhouse gases into one standard unit: tons of CO2 equivalent (tCO2eq) helps give a standard measurement we can compare.


Also known as “green sheen”; conveying a false impression or providing misleading information about how a company’s products are more environmentally friendly.

Net zero

When carbon emissions and removals are balanced.

Until emissions and removals are balanced, global temperatures are predicted to rise. Currently almost all of the world’s CO2 removal occurs through natural processes. That’s primarily plants and trees taking in CO2 from the air, and the soil absorbing and storing it.


To creatively repair, reuse or give a new lease of life to items that would otherwise have been disposed of and either gone to landfill or been commercially recycled.

Small changes make a big difference

Two-thirds of carbon emissions are caused by humans. There is something everyone can do about climate change. It’s just about choosing what changes work for you, your household and your working life.

Visit The Hub for advice and examples of new habits, resources and workshops to learn new skills.

This website, The Hub and our Facebook group are judgement-free zones full of positive actions and solutions you can embed in your everyday life to make green living (and working) the norm.

Father and son with placard "we have no time to lose"

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