Figure 1. Types of Global Environmental Change.

Systemic

Characteristic: Direct impact on globally functioning system

Examples:
Industrial and land use emissions of "greenhouse gases
Industrial and consumer emissions of ozone-depleting gases
Land cover changes in albedo

Cumulative

Characteristic: Impact through worldwide distribution of change

Examples:

Groundwater pollution and depletion
Species depletion/genetic alteration (biodiversity)

Characteristic: Impact through magnitude of change (share of global resource)

Examples:
Deforestation
Industrial toxic pollutants
Soil depletion on prime agricultural lands

Turner, B.L. et al. 1990