Glossary of Environmental Terms

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table - in the legislative sense, an action taken to halt debate on a bill.

tap water - drinking water monitored (and often filtered) for protection against contamination and available for public consumption from sources within the home.

tax shift - replacing one kind of taxes with another, without changing the total amount of money collected. For example, replacing a portion of income taxes with carbon tax or other pollution taxes.

telecommuting - working with others via telecommunications technologies (e.g., telephones, modems, faxes) without physically travelling to an office.

thermonuclear - the application of high heat, obtained via a fission explosion, to bring about fusion of light nuclei.

threatened species - species of flora or fauna likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future.

Three Gorges - a project along the Yangtze river in China to build the largest hydroelectric dam in the world.

timber - logged wood sold as a commodity.

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TNT Equivalent - a measure of the energy released in the detonation of a nuclear weapon, expressed in terms of the quantity of TNT which would release the same amount of energy.

Tongass - a national forest in southeast Alaska comprising one of the United States' last remaining temperate rainforests.

toxic - poisonous.

toxic emissions - poisonous chemicals discharged to air, water, or land.

toxic sites - land contaminated with toxic pollution, usually unsuitable for human habitation.

toxic waste - garbage or waste that can injure, poison, or harm living things, and is sometimes life-threatening.

toxification - poisoning.

traffic calming - designing streets to reduce automobile speed and to enhance walking and bicycling.

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transit - see public transportation.

transportation - any means of conveying goods and people.

transportation planning - systems to improve the efficiency of the transportation system in order to enhance human access to goods and services.

trash - waste material that cannot be recycled and reused (synonymous with garbage).

trawls - nets with a wide mouth tapering to a small, pointed end, usually called the "cod end." Trawls are towed behind a vessel at any depth in the water column.

trip reduction - reducing the total numbers of vehicle trips, by sharing rides or consolidating trips with diverse goals into fewer trips.

trolling - a method of fishing using several lines, each hooked and baited, which are slowly dragged behind the vessel.

turtle excluder device (TED) - a gear modification used on shrimp trawls that enables incidentally caught sea turtles to escape from the nets.

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