President-elect Joe Biden’s cabinet is beginning to emerge, as yesterday news broke that he is expected to tap former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to lead the Department of Energy, with former EPA head Gina McCarthy to serve a central domestic policy coordination role at the White House. The Department of Energy will play a major role in Biden’s plan for decarbonization, and if confirmed, Granholm is expected to draw on her experience passing a renewable portfolio standard for the state of Michigan, as well as her work on electric vehicles with the auto industry as governor.
Gina McCarthy, Obama-era EPA admin and current head of NRDC, will lead the newly formed Office of Domestic Climate Policy, coordinating Biden’s domestic response to climate change and serving as a counterpart to John Kerry, who will focus on international climate policy as special presidential envoy for climate.
The expected cabinet nominations were well-received by climate activists, with Sunrise spokesman Garret Blad quoted in the Washington Post saying that “We are very encouraged by the potential of Gina McCarthy to lead a new Office of Climate Mobilization. McCarthy was among our initial picks for the role because she understands the urgency of the latest science and the need to use every tool available in the executive branch to stop the climate crisis. The real test, however, of Biden’s commitment to his bold climate plan is if this role has the teeth necessary to be effective.” (Granholm: Politico, CNN, Washington Post $, Bloomberg, NPR, Huffpost, The Detroit News, Michigan Live. McCarthy: Washington Post $, New York Times $, CNN, Buzzfeed, NPR, Politico, Bloomberg, Reuters, Axios, The Hill. Both: NBC News, WSJ $, Roll Call, Bloomberg $)