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 nonhuman world, including coproduced features, with particular emphasis on living organisms, their diversity, their interactions among themselves and with their abiotic environment. Within the framing of the natural sciences (context of science), nature include e.g., all dimensions of biodiversity, species, genotypes, populations, ecosystems, the biosphere, ecosystem functioning, communities, biomes, Earth life support’s systems, and their associated ecological, evolutionary, biogeochemical processes and biocultural diversity. Within the framework of economics, it includes categories such as biotic natural resources, natural capital and natural assets. Within a wider context of social sciences and humanities and interdisciplinary environmental sciences, it is referred to with categories such as natural heritage, living environment, or the nonhuman. Within the context of other knowledge systems, it includes categories such as Mother Earth (shared by many IPLCs around the world), Pachamama (South American Andes), se¯nluo´-wa`nxia`ng and tien-ti (East Asia), Country (Australia), fonua/vanua/ whenua/ples (South Pacific Islands), Iwigara (Northern Mexico), Ixofijmogen (Southern Argentina and Chile), among many others. Other (non-living) components of nature, such as deep aquifers, mineral and fossil reserves, and wind, solar, geothermal and wave power, are not the focus of the Platform. The degree to which humans are considered part of nature varies strongly across these categories"1.