Glossary of Climate Change Definitions

Download the Climate Change Definitions Glossary

Interpretation: The glossary is designed to contain encyclopaedic definitions. This means that the definition provides some elaboration and differences between what might be considered similar definitions. The inclusion of a definition does not imply that it is a position adopted by the co-sponsors and definitions should always be considered neutral. For example, the inclusion of the term “offsetting” should not be interpreted as the co-sponsors having a positive or negative position on offsetting as a concept.

Sources: Wherever possible (and if relevant) definitions are based on those used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) or other competent bodies and as such agreed by scientific and/or political consensus. Where changes have been made to an original definition, they have been done so with the intent to make the definition more applicable to shipping or to make the definition easier to understand for the reader. Where used, references are provided at the end of the document.

Where a high-level definition (ie one which is agreed at international level by consensus) does not exist, novel definitions have been created. These have been sense-checked for scientific integrity against common usage of such terms in scientific literature and subsequently approved by BIMCO’s Sub-group on alternative fuels.
Where a definition includes reference to another definition these are indicated in italics.

Peer review: The first version of this document was peer-reviewed by:

  • Katharine Palmer, United Nations Climate Change (UNFCCC) High-Level Climate Champion’s (HLCC) Shipping Lead
  • Dr Georg H. Engelhard from UK Centre for Environment Fisheries & Aquaculture Science (Cefas)
  • Professor Ralph Rayner from Grantham Research Institute on Climate and the Environment, London School of Economics and Political Science