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WIREs Clim Change
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Is it too late to prevent systemic danger to the world's poor?

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Abstract To answer the question “is it too late to stop dangerous climate change?” requires systemic thinking. An experiment named ‘climate risk disclosure’ is currently underway in the global financial industry, one that is seeking to stabilize the climate‐finance meta‐system. This meta‐system is in danger of meta‐crisis, but addressing this risk in itself is a systemic danger to the world's poor, to the extent that the climate‐finance risk calculus does not adequately account for social risk. The global poor now face being systemically excluded from having their interests measured and managed in the climate‐finance meta‐system. Already vulnerable groups, at risk from poverty, climate change impacts, political unrest, and other social ills, are at risk of being even further marginalized. The systemic embedding of social exclusion is a largely unrecognized risk in work toward maintaining climate‐finance meta‐system stability. The question of preventing dangerous climate change, then, may be not so much a question of ‘when?,’ but of how to reduce the dangers arising from systemic social marginalization and compounding vulnerabilities along with systemically reducing carbon emissions. Perhaps it is not loo late to stop climate danger, but without a specific focus on social risk in the meta‐system this may only be true for those who already enjoy the fruits of global financial stability. This article is categorized under: Social Status of Climate Change Knowledge > Knowledge and Practice

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