I don’t think this is indirect and unlikely at all; in fact, I think we are seeing this effect already. In particular, some of the 2nd-order effects of climate change (such as natural catastrophe-->famine-->war/refugees) are already warping politics in the developed world in ways that will make it more difficult to fight climate change (e.g. strengthening politicians who believe climate change is a myth). As the effects of climate change intensify, so will the dangers to other x-risks.
In particular, a plausible path is climate change immiserates poor/working class + elite attempts to stop climate change hurting working class (eg war on coal) --> even higher inequality --> broad-based resentment against elite initiatives. X-risk reduction is likely to be one of those elite initiatives simply because most X-risks are uninutitive and require time/energy/specialized knowledge to evaluate, which few non-elites have
Beware brittle arguments.
That’s a good point, but I don’t think my argument was brittle in this sense (perhaps it was poorly phrased). In general, my point is that climate change amplifies the probabilities of each step in many potential chains of catastrophic events. Crucially, these chains have promoted war/political instability in the past and are likely to in the future. That’s not the same as saying that each link in a single untested causal chain is likely to happen, leading to a certain conclusion, which is my understanding of a “brittle argument”
On the other hand, I think it’s fair to say that e.g. “Climate change was for sure the primary cause of the Syrian civil war” is a brittle argument
AFAIK this is not how the current refugee crisis occurred. The wars in the Middle East / Afghanistan were not caused by climate change.
are already warping politics in the developed world in ways that will make it more difficult to fight climate change (e.g. strengthening politicians who believe climate change is a myth
If climate change increases, that will convince people to stop voting for politicians who think it is a myth.
You’re also relying on the assumption that leaders who oppose immigration will also be leaders who doubt climate change. That may be true in the US right now but as a sweeping argument across decades and continents it is unsubstantiated. It’s also unclear if such politicians will increase or decrease x-risks.
I’d previously read that there was substantial evidence linking climate change-->extreme weather-->famine--> Syrian civil war (a major source of refugees). One example: https://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/10.1175/WCAS-D-13-00059.1 This paper claims the opposite though: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0962629816301822.
“The Syria case, the article finds, does not support ‘threat multiplier’ views of the impacts of climate change; to the contrary, we conclude, policymakers, commentators and scholars alike should exercise far greater caution when drawing such linkages or when securitising climate change.”
I’ll have to investigate more since I was highly confident of such a ‘threat multiplier’ view.
On your other two points, I expect the idea of anthropogenic global warming to continue to be associated with the elite; direct evidence of the climate changing is likely to convince people that climate change is real, but not necessarily that humans caused it. Concern over AGW is currently tied with various beliefs (including openness to immigration) and cultural markers predominantly shared by a subsection of the educated and affluent. I expect increasing inequality to calcify tribal barriers, which would make it very difficult to create widespread support for commonly proposed solutions to AGW.
PS: how do I create hyperlinks?
Highlight your text and then select the hyperlink icon in the pop-up bar.