Buzzword of the year award goes to ‘net zero’, as policymakers fall over themselves pledging to reach it. But what does it mean? Net zero is when the amount of greenhouse gases we emit is equalled by the amount we remove. This is done by reducing emissions, and then offsetting the remainder – but it’s also ripe for greenwash, thanks to ‘offsetting’ being such a dubious concept. The most important question should always be: how are companies and countries doing all they can to reduce emissions and shift towards a permanently low-carbon way of living?
While organic refers to the certified system of farming with no artificial chemicals, agroecology is more nuanced. It is farming in harmony with ecology, to the benefit of nature – but crucially, it places equal measure on equality, fair trade, and ethical business. As such, it is one of the more progressive visions for the future; one where the climate and nature crises are tackled in a way that puts people, and not corporations, at the centre.
Similar to the above, the movement for climate justice is about a fair transition to a greener world. At the heart of this on the geopolitical stage is the need for climate finance: helping countries in the global south to adapt to much more severe climate threats which they themselves had little role in causing.
Restoring nature (like peat bogs, forests, kelp, and seagrass meadows) to store carbon, as well as for biodiversity, water and other benefits.
Is there a term you think needs an explanation? Submit a comment on our Your Questions Answered article and we will add it to the list.