Climate at risk. The financial turn in corporate climate change communication
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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The present article examines the linguistic aspects of climate change through a terminological analysis of the emerging concept of climate risk. The overall aim is to investigate emergent terminology and the evolution of the concept through a qualitative analysis of a set of international policy and think tank documents, as well as to provide an analysis of relevant Norwegian documents covering three text genres (policy documents, think tank reports, corporate annual reports). Our findings are in line with recent research that stresses the increased importance of risk in climate change communication. Our study also provides further knowledge about how the concept of climate risk has changed to include a widened risk perspective beyond that of natural disasters, including that of business risk. Next, the focus on the impact of climate change on business points to a reconceptualisation of climate change governance where responsibility is increasingly shifted from the sphere of policy makers, international organisations, and politicians to the private sector. Third, our analysis suggests that while the emergent concept of climate risk emphasises the financial risk that climate change poses to businesses, the impact on nature, the environment and humans is less visible in the texts.