Terra Environment Dictionary — D

Terra Environment Dictionary is a resource of words, terms and phrases related to environmentalism, as defined by society.

A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z   #


Milk, or products made from or containing milk, such as butter and cheese, usually from cows.
Contrary to popular belief, the environmental impact of dairy is not as low as people would like to think, as cows still have to be fed and raised, requiring land use and emitting methane in the process.
Dairy is, again, not significantly better in terms of animal welfare, as cows are forcibly impregnated to keep them producing milk. After giving birth, their calves are taken away, causing the mothers significant distress. While a cow can live more than 20 years, a dairy cow is sent for slaughter at an age of less than five years, as the strain of being kept pregnant virtually all the time takes its toll and diminishes the cow’s “productivity”.


The clearing of trees or entire forests for logging, or to convert land for non-forest use, most commonly agriculture in the form of farms and palm oil plantations. Deforestation often results in loss of habitat and biodiversity, destruction of carbon sinks and land degradation.


A barren area of landscape that supports few to no plants and animals due to hostile living conditions, such as lack of precipitation, lack of arable soil, lack of water (land); permafrost (polar regions) or lack of oxygen (oceanic dead zones).


The process of converting life-supporting landscapes into deserts, commonly through human activity, such as deforestation, overgrazing, urbanisation and agricultural and industrial pollution.

A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z   #