Exclusive-U.S. Climate Envoy Kerry Names Rick Duke Deputy

WASHINGTON (Reuters), The U.S. Special climate Envoy John Kerry has named Rick Duke, one of his senior advisors - who was instrumental in negotiating an international agreement last year to lower greenhouse gas emissions, as his deputy.

Exclusive-U.S. Climate Envoy Kerry Names Rick Duke Deputy

Kerry stated that Duke would play a major role in implementing the U.S. commitments under The Glasgow Climate Pact. He also encouraged other governments to set emission reduction targets for 2030, which are consistent with the goal to keep global temperatures below 1.5 C.

Kerry stated that Rick's strategic vision played a crucial role in the U.S. climate efforts over the past two decades.

Duke was previously a Brookings Institution fellow and a special advisor on climate change to President Barack Obama. He will be joined by Sue Biniaz, the deputy special envoy for climate change, to take over U.S. climate policy in 2022. This replaces Jonathan Pershing who resigned last month.

As Kerry's advisor Duke was instrumental in the formation of the Global Methane Pledge last year with the European Union. This voluntary partnership worldwide aims to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030, from 2020 levels. More than 100 countries have joined.

He was also instrumental in the development of the U.S. Climate Strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by half by 2030, as well as leading efforts to get the United States to sign the Kigali Amendment (the Montreal Protocol) to address hydrofluorocarbons and other ozone-depleting substances that are used in refrigeration.

Pershing will resume his former job as the Hewlett Foundation's California climate program manager. According to Pershing, he only intended to remain at the State Department for one year.


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