Finance has been critical to the development of interest and momentum concerning the Paris Agreement, which emerged from COP21. However, a quick scan of the accord could lead many to derive a disappointing picture because of the absence of practical commitments to financial devices that can limit the risks of climate change. We support the opposite view that the text marks a new departure by committing countries to “making financial flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development ». This was matched by parallel developments such as the Financial Stability Board’s launch of a new Task Force on climate disclosure. We argue that, further steps now need to be taken within the broader context of financing the new model of prosperity laid out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN, September 2015). At a time of increasing financial uncertainty and inadequate investment in the real economy, putting in place a framework for financing the transition to a low-carbon, resilient model of development is now an economic imperative – and an immense opportunity. Mitigating the systemic risks of climate change while putting the global financial system on a path toward balanced and sustainable development, is in the long-term strategic interests of both industrialized and developing countries and we suggest what practical steps can be accomplished in a near future in this direction.