A glossary of definitions for terms relating to biodiversity, ecosystems services and conservation.
All definitions are referenced, where possible preference has been given to internationally recognised definitions (for example those defined by international conventions or agreements). The terms have been chosen to support understanding of biodiversity and conservation issues, and terms relating to biodiversity loss are complemented by those relating to conservation responses supported by international conservation organisations, governments, scientists and business sectors.
More detailed explanations are provided for a number of key terms, to provide further background information.
The terms can be filtered by category to aid in the navigation of the many definitions.
The conservation hierarchy is based on the mitigation hierarchy approach to managing the biodiversity risks of development and includes the same hierarchy of four steps: Avoid, Minimise, Restore/Remediate and Offset. However, while the mitigation hierarchy deals with each step reactively to reduce and control negative impacts, the conservation hierarchy goes beyond compensating for impacts and approaches each step proactively, including Additional Conservation Actions towards a particular conservation goal1.