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Climate Terms and Tools

Facilities face many challenges related to climate change, including reducing emissions, adapting to new conditions, and increasing resilience. This page serves as a primer for building personnel who are new to the topic or looking for additional resources.


Understanding climate change's unique vocabulary is the first step. The definitions below have been compiled by federal experts in the field.





For further information, see the following federal government resources:

For information on federal government GHG emissions, see the Department of Energy's Federal Facility Reporting Requirements and Performance Dataopens in new window and these datasets from the Comprehensive Annual Energy Data and Sustainability Performance report:

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Climate Change

Changes in average weather conditions that persist over multiple decades or longer. Climate change encompasses both increases and decreases in temperature, as well as shifts in precipitation, changing risk of certain types of severe weather events, and changes to other features of the climate system.

Source: GlobalChange.gov | Climate and Health Assessment, A5 Glossary and Acronyms opens in new window

Learn more: Climate Terms and Tools

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