Just & In-Time Climate Policy
Four Initiatives for a Fair Transformation

Policy Paper 9

WBGU, Berlin, 2018

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Limiting global warming to well below 2°C requires the rapid decarbonization of the global economy. If this enterprise fails, we will jeopardize the life-support systems of future generations. The longer the transformation towards climate compatibility is delayed, the more severe the risks and damage will be for a growing number of people. The requirements of transformation and the damage caused by climate change have an unequal temporal, geographical and social distribution – as do the respective possibilities for dealing with them. The WBGU therefore proposes a just & in-time transformation that takes into account all people affected, empowers them, holds those responsible for climate change accountable, and creates both global and national prospects for the future. The WBGU proposes that the German Federal Government should promote four exemplary initiatives of a just & in-time climate policy targeting (1) the people affected by the structural change towards climate compatibility (e.g. in coal-mining regions), (2) the legal rights of people harmed by climate change, (3) the dignified migration of people who lose their native countries due to climate change, and (4) the creation of financing instruments for just & in-time transformation processes.

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