Whilst mitigation means working to reduce greenhouse gases, adaption contrasts by focussing the efforts on trying to control the environmental damage instead of trying to reduce it.
Adaption is defined by The UN-established IPCC (The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change) as the “adjustment in natural or human systems to a new or changing environment”. The definition continues: “Adaptation to climate change refers to adjustment in natural or human systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli or their effects, which moderates harm or exploits beneficial opportunities”.
Adaption can be defined into various types. This includes autonomous versus planned adaption, private versus public adaption and anticipatory versus reactive adaption.
Mitigation is the contrast to adaption. Again, looking at the IPCC definition, mitigation is “an anthropogenic intervention to reduce the sources or enhance the sinks of greenhouse gases”. Translating this to common language, it means “what humans do in order to cut emissions or store greenhouse gases”.