Glossary

Acronym/Term | Definition |

Acceleration | The rate of change of the rate of change of some variable such as distance, population, amount of resources, or consumption. Simply, how fast speed changes. |

Bha | Billion hectares, typically of bioproductive land. |

Biocapacity | The total mass of resources that can be annually generated by the Earth's biosphere. |

Bioproductive Land | Land, as part of the biosphere, that provides resources that can be used by people and other species. |

Biosphere | The totality of Earth life and the non-living resources it uses. |

Capacity | The total mass of resources that are regenerated or reusable for at least one year. |

Capacity Growth | Annual rate of increase in capacity (%). |

Capita | Unit of population, typically a person. |

Change Year | Year that a change in variable value takes effect. |

Combined Population Model | Also: combined model. |

Comfort Zone | An environment in which a person is most happy and productive. |

Community | Group of people who interact regularly, typically for survival. |

Complexity | The amount of information that describes human experience at any given time, in terms of people, their internalizations of life and meaning, and the environments they inhabit. |

Consumption | Mass of resources per unit of time that are made unavailable for use. This includes extraction losses, pollution, and degradation. |

Consumption Laws | Also: Jarvis's Laws of Consumption. |

Consumption Model | Model of consumption as a function of how available resources change over time. |

Consumption Potential | Electrical equivalent of consumption. |

CPC | Consumption per capita. |

Cumulative | The summed values of a variable. Mathematically equivalent to a series. |

Depletion Time | Amount of time a constant population takes to deplete its resources at a fixed rate (consumption). Also: Tmax. |

Distribution (math) | Function relating a measurable quantity to the members of a population. |

Ecological Debt | Cost of hectares consumed beyond what is available (capacity). Expressed in pounds or dollars. |

Ecological Footprint | Global Ecological Footprint. |

Ecological Resources | Natural resources, including air, land, water , and the species that maintain them. Measured by the Global Ecological Footprint. |

Energy | 1. Fundamental part of the Universe, measured as the ability of one thing to change another (do work). 2. Result of consuming fuel. 3. World energy production (quadrillion Btu). |

Environment | 1. The full set of circumstances that affects a person's wellbeing at a particular time. 2. From EPA: "The sum of all external conditions affecting the
life, development and survival of an organism." |

Environment Type | Also, "Etype." A numerical representation of the external conditions (environment) perceived and influenced by people of a certain person type. See Environment History. |

Evil | 1. Characteristic of an action that intentionally harms or kills a living organism for any reason other than meeting the most basic need to survive. 2. Characteristic of someone who consistently enables an evil action and considers it acceptable. |

Emax | In version 4 of the Population-consumption model: a variable used to represent the number of maximum environments. |

Epop | In version 4 of the Population-consumption model: a variable used to represent the number of inhabited environments. |

Expected Value | A combination of several projections into one representative projection. Uses the PERT method, which approximates a statistical bell curve to calculate the mean [Expected Value = (Low Estimate + 4 * Mode Estimate + High Estimate)/6]. |

Extraction Mass | Average mass per person in an isolated population extracted for use. See Transaction Mass. |

Fe | Global Ecological Footprint. |

Femin | Minimum global footprint for a given population size. |

Footprint | Ecological resources used per person per year. |

Fossil Fuel | Fuel derived from organic matter, typically millions of years old. |

Fuel | Resource used for energy. |

GEF | Model of population and consumption using global ecological footprint and population for the years 1961 through 2005. See calculations. |

Global Ecological Footprint | Bioproductive land that provides ecological resources being used by humanity (see WWF Living Planet Report 2006). Also: global footprint, total footprint. |

Global Responsibility | Responsibility for improving the lives of people in one's community and species, which translates into increasing average happiness and longevity. |

Group | 1. A number of people with one or more common characteristics. 2. The smallest unit of a community (between 12 and 36 members; typically 24). |

GWP | Gross World Product (typically in trillions of fixed dollars). Equivalent to the combined Gross Domestic Product of all countries in the world. |

Happiness | People's satisfaction with their lives, usually measured in percent (see Happiness, World Comfort, Limits to Happiness). Also, ratio of people to natural environments, or natural environments to people, whichever is smaller, represented by "h" (see Population-Consumption v4). |

Happy Environment | The statistical number of environments occupied by people who are 100% happy, equal to happiness times population. |

Healthy Society | A society that can meet its needs using only biocapacity. |

Hectare (ha) | Metric unit of area. Here, it is an area of land that provides ecological resources, equivalent to one global hectare (used in Global Ecological Footprint). One hectare is approximately 2.47 acres. |

High Growth | Population-consumption scenario where resources are increased to accommodate current trends. It typically involves a speed limit that is much higher than presently achievable on a routine basis. |

Ideality | Average of life expectancy and happiness, where life expectancy is in years and happiness is in percent of maximum (100). |

Ideal World | Possible future that maximizes the time that humanity can survive and thrive on Earth. See Visualizing an Ideal World, Future Alternatives, and Imagining the Future for slightly different treatments of this. |

Ideal World Index | IWI. The product of ideality and population, normalized to the end of the year 2000 (IWI=1.0 on 12/31/00). |

Inhabited Environment | In version 4 of the Population-consumption model: an abstraction of a set of resources and conditions available to people, but not necessarily used or usable, that when fully used will make them 100% satisfied with life (happy). Measured in units of people-equivalents, with the total number represented as "Epop." See: maximum environments. |

Initial Population | Value of the population function for the first year of the data used to make projections. |

Initial Year | First year of the data used to make projections. |

Intelligence | A measure of a person's perception of where they are relative to their preferred position. |

IWI | Ideal World Index. |

IWIsum | "Ideal World Index Sum." The sum of the annual values of the Ideal World Index over a span of time (starting in 2000). Used to evaluate scenarios. |

Laws of Consumption | Laws relating consumption to population, speed, and life expectancy. |

Life Expectancy | The average time that an average member of a population can be expected to live when born in a given year, measured in years. Sometimes used interchangeably with lifespan. |

Lifespan | Life expectancy of an individual. |

Longevity Function | The relationship between depletion time, resources, and speed. |

Max. Capacity | Maximum allowable capacity. |

Maximum Environments | In version 4 of the Population-consumption model: the maximum number of environments that can be potentially inhabited. See: inhabited environments. |

Max. Speed | Maximum allowable speed. |

Model | Abstract representation of a real situation, typically in mathematical terms. |

Nature | Also: biosphere. Used in discussions of consumption, the part of the biosphere that contributes to the survival of life on Earth, especially humanity. |

Natural Capacity | The amount of resources generated by Nature each year. |

Natural Capital | Also, Nature. Specifically, the part of Earth (mostly other species) that generate natural capacity. |

No Growth | Population-consumption scenario involving no population growth or decline and no change in per- capita consumption. |

Non-renewable Resource | A resource that, once consumed, is not replaced by Nature (at least within the span of time of interest). |

Normalized | Expressed as a fraction of a specific number (usually the value for a given year). |

Oil | One of several fossil fuels used for energy. |

Peak | The maximum value of a mathematical function, typically the point in time where a variable stops increasing and either levels off or begins dropping. |

People-equivalent | Unit of environments, as used in version 4 of the Population-consumption model, representing a set of environmental conditions that may be inhabited by a person (where a person occupies exactly one person-equivalent and may use the rest of an inhabited environment). See: inhabited environments. |

Per-capita | Per person. |

Per-capita Consumption | Consumption per person. |

Per Capita Consumption Function (CPC A, CPC B) | Mathematical function used to compute consumption per person. Consumption in year "t" is C(t) = A*t^B. "A" is referred to as "CPC A" and "B" is referred to as "CPC B." |

Person Type | Also, "Ptype." A numerical representation of a part of a population that perceives and interacts with the world in a specific way. See Environment Type and Personality and Happiness. |

Personality | Preferred way of dealing with the world. Here, used as a means of characterizing people's satisfaction with their lives (happiness) in a given environment. See Personality and Happiness. |

Personal Responsibility | Responsibility for improving one's own life and that of close relatives and friends, which translates into increasing personal happiness and life expectancy. |

Population | Amount of people consuming a resource. Also: population size. |

Population-Consumption Model | A model relating population size to amount of used resources. Also referred to as the combined population model. |

Population Crash | The dropping of population size from a maximum to zero or near-zero. |

Population Function (Pop. A, Pop. B) | Mathematical function used to compute population size in the consumption model. Population in year "t" is P(t) = A(t)*t^B where the amount of resources is R(t), and A(t) = A(t-1)*R(t-1)/R(t-2). "A" is referred to as "Pop. A" and "B" is referred to as "Pop. B" or "Population B." |

Power | The fraction of distance between the starting position and the preferred environment ("comfort zone") that a person can cover in an arbitrary interval of time. |

Ppop | In version 4 of the Population-consumption model: a variable used to represent the size of the human population. |

Renewable Resource | A resource which is regenerated or replaced by Nature after it is consumed (typically within a year). |

Resource | Something which can be consumed by humans. It is typically a natural resource, whose amount is measured in mass. |

Resource Density | Amount of resources per unit of volume. Used to calculate the resources in a sphere whose radius is increasing at a given speed. |

Resource Growth | Annual rate of increase in available resources (%), independent of consumption. |

Sigma | Unit equal to one standard deviation (also, SD). |

Species | A type of life form distinguishable from others, whose members can breed successfully. |

Speed | 1. Distance per unit time that the radius of a sphere changes. 2. Average distance traveled to access and move resources per unit of time. |

Space Settlement | The establishment of communities on other worlds. |

Speed Limit | Limit to how fast resources can be reached and moved. |

Speed Model | A model relating speed to consumption and population. |

Statistical Distribution | A mathematical function that describes numbers of observations, where typically the observed values are on the horizontal axis, and the number of observations of those values are on the vertical axis. |

Tmax | Maximum time for resources to be depleted by a isolated population of constant size (and per-capita consumption). Also: depletion time. |

Total Footprint | Ecological footprint used by all of humanity, calculated by multiplying population by footprint. |

Transaction | An interaction between two people which results in an amount of mass becoming unavailable for further use. |

Transaction Mass | Average mass per person in an isolated population used during transactions. See Extraction Mass. |

T/WAB | Transition Westminster/Arvada/Broomfield (Colorado) |

World | 1. Earth. 2. The total amount of good in the observable universe. |

Z | Horizontal axis of a graph of statistical distributions corresponding to the measured values, normalized to the width of a distribution in units of standard deviations. |

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