catastrophe, net zero, eco-anxiety and global heating are some new terms to
make their way into the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) in 2021. The words
entering the dictionary provide further evidence of how present concerns around
climate change have percolated into the public imagination. Words such as “climate
crisis”, “climate strike” and “climate justice” are also among those being
added, according to a report in The Independent.

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The introduction
of these new expressions centered around the crisis of climate change has been
dedicated to exploring the new language around climate change ahead of the United
Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26, which will see leaders of the world
meet to discuss new policies that the world can adopt amid rising challenges of
adverse weather events.

“As world leaders
come together to seek solutions to the climate change problem, it has been
fascinating, if at times somewhat alarming to delve deeper into the language we
use, both now and in the past, to talk about climate and sustainability,” Trish
Stewart, science editor at the Oxford English Dictionary was quoted saying.

Stewart further
said that the very real urgency that is upon the world now is being reflected
in our language. What happens next depends on so many factors but, one thing we
can be sure of is that our language will continue to evolve to tell the story,
said Stewart.

The COP26,
formally the United Nations Climate Change Conference, is the 26th
UN conference on climate change. The conference will start on October 31 and
conclude on November 12. The United Kingdom and Italy will co-preside over the

Also Read | List of Korean origin words added to the Oxford English Dictionary

Earlier this month,
the Oxford English Dictionary added 26 of Korean words demonstrating how
aspects of Korean life have made their way into the global cultural paradigm.
The new words include “hallyu” the Korean original that has made BTS one of the
most popular brands in the world.