ADAPTATION: an action taken to prepare for climate change.
ADAPTIVE CAPACITY: the ability to adjust to climate change in order to minimize potential damages, take advantage of opportunities, or cope with consequences.
CLIMATE: the average weather conditions over a long period of time (usually 30 years).
CLIMATE CHANGE: the gradual change in average weather conditions over time.
CLIMATE MODEL: a numerical representation of the climate system.
CLIMATE SCENARIO: a reasonable, and often simplified, representation of the future climate.
CLIMATE CHANGE SCENARIO: the difference between a climate scenario and the current climate.
DOWNSCALING: a method that derives local- or regional-scale (10-to-100 km) information from larger-scale models or data analyses.
EMISSIONS SCENARIO: a reasonable representation of the future levels of greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere.
EROSION: the process where soil or rock is moved or weathered by the action of streams, glaciers, waves, winds, or underground water.
INFRASTRUCTURE: the roads, bridges, buildings, dykes, utilities, or other installations and services essential for the development, operation, and growth of a community, province/territory, or country.
RESILIENCE: the ability to maintain the same structure, function, and capacity to adapt to stress after being impacted by climate change.
SALTWATER INTRUSION: the process by which saltwater enters a coastal aquifer, leading to contamination of groundwater.
SEA LEVEL RISE: an increase in the mean level of the ocean. Relative sea level rise considers the mean level of the ocean relative to the land.
SENSITIVITY: the degree to which a system is affected, either positively or negatively, by climate change.
VULNERABILITY: the degree to which a system is susceptible to, and unable to cope with, adverse effects of climate change. Vulnerability is a function of a system’s exposure to climate change, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity.
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