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Biden cabinet: John Kerry named climate envoy as inner circle get key posts Biden cabinet: John Kerry named climate envoy as inner circle get key posts
(about 2 hours later)
John Kerry was joined by his granddaughter when he signed the Paris climate agreement in 2016John Kerry was joined by his granddaughter when he signed the Paris climate agreement in 2016
US President-elect Joe Biden is to nominate one of the leading architects of the Paris climate agreement as his climate envoy.US President-elect Joe Biden is to nominate one of the leading architects of the Paris climate agreement as his climate envoy.
Ex-US Secretary of State John Kerry was one of several named for top positions by the Biden transition team on Monday.Ex-US Secretary of State John Kerry was one of several named for top positions by the Biden transition team on Monday.
It marks a big break with the climate policy under the Trump administration as Mr Biden makes good on his campaign pledge to tackle climate change.It marks a big break with the climate policy under the Trump administration as Mr Biden makes good on his campaign pledge to tackle climate change.
Other key picks include long-time aide Antony Blinken as secretary of state.Other key picks include long-time aide Antony Blinken as secretary of state.
Reports say former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen will be the choice for treasury secretary.Reports say former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen will be the choice for treasury secretary.
The nomination comes as calls are growing for President Donald Trump to concede the election.The nomination comes as calls are growing for President Donald Trump to concede the election.
He has made unsubstantiated claims of electoral fraud and is continuing to pursue legal challenges over the result.He has made unsubstantiated claims of electoral fraud and is continuing to pursue legal challenges over the result.
While Mr Trump has not conceded, he has however agreed to allow the formal transition process to begin, to allow Mr Biden to prepare to take office.
How big are Biden's climate change ambitions?How big are Biden's climate change ambitions?
Can Trump overturn the election result?Can Trump overturn the election result?
Mr Biden is projected to beat President Trump by 306 votes to 232 when the US electoral college meets to formally confirm the winner on 14 December. This is far above the 270 votes he needs.Mr Biden is projected to beat President Trump by 306 votes to 232 when the US electoral college meets to formally confirm the winner on 14 December. This is far above the 270 votes he needs.
In a statement following the announcement on Monday, Mr Biden said: "I need a team ready on day one to help me reclaim America's seat at the head of the table, rally the world to meet the biggest challenges we face, and advance our security, prosperity, and values. This is the crux of that team." In a statement following the cabinet announcement on Monday, Mr Biden said: "I need a team ready on day one to help me reclaim America's seat at the head of the table, rally the world to meet the biggest challenges we face, and advance our security, prosperity, and values. This is the crux of that team."
Some of the positions require confirmation in the US Senate.Some of the positions require confirmation in the US Senate.
US media reports say Janet Yellen will be Mr Biden's choice for Treasury secretary
Who is John Kerry and what will he do?Who is John Kerry and what will he do?
Mr Kerry was chosen for the role of special presidential envoy for climate.Mr Kerry was chosen for the role of special presidential envoy for climate.
The Biden transition team said the position would see him "fight climate change full-time". He is also set to be the first official dedicated to climate change to sit on the National Security Council.The Biden transition team said the position would see him "fight climate change full-time". He is also set to be the first official dedicated to climate change to sit on the National Security Council.
Mr Kerry signed the Paris climate agreement on behalf of the US in 2016. The deal committed countries to working to limit the global temperature rise.Mr Kerry signed the Paris climate agreement on behalf of the US in 2016. The deal committed countries to working to limit the global temperature rise.
Under Mr Trump, the US recently became the first country to formally withdraw from the agreement. But Mr Biden has said he plans to rejoin the accord as soon as possible.Under Mr Trump, the US recently became the first country to formally withdraw from the agreement. But Mr Biden has said he plans to rejoin the accord as soon as possible.
Our Planet Matters: Climate change explainedOur Planet Matters: Climate change explained
In 2019, Mr Kerry launched a coalition of world leaders and celebrities - dubbed World War Zero - to call for climate change action and net zero carbon emissions.In 2019, Mr Kerry launched a coalition of world leaders and celebrities - dubbed World War Zero - to call for climate change action and net zero carbon emissions.
Following news of his new role on Monday, he tweeted: "America will soon have a government that treats the climate crisis as the urgent national security threat it is."Following news of his new role on Monday, he tweeted: "America will soon have a government that treats the climate crisis as the urgent national security threat it is."
Covid pandemic has little impact on rise in CO2Covid pandemic has little impact on rise in CO2
Mr Kerry previously served as secretary of state during Barack Obama's second term as president. A veteran Democratic politician, he lost to incumbent Republican George W Bush in the 2004 presidential election.Mr Kerry previously served as secretary of state during Barack Obama's second term as president. A veteran Democratic politician, he lost to incumbent Republican George W Bush in the 2004 presidential election.
He was a senator for 28 years and chairman of the foreign relations committee.He was a senator for 28 years and chairman of the foreign relations committee.
He endorsed Mr Biden to be the Democratic Party's candidate in the 2020 race and joined him on the campaign trail.He endorsed Mr Biden to be the Democratic Party's candidate in the 2020 race and joined him on the campaign trail.
What about the other roles?What about the other roles?
Mr Blinken was nominated as secretary of state - the most important foreign policy position. The 58-year-old was deputy secretary of state and deputy national security adviser during the Obama administration, in which Mr Biden served as vice-president.Mr Blinken was nominated as secretary of state - the most important foreign policy position. The 58-year-old was deputy secretary of state and deputy national security adviser during the Obama administration, in which Mr Biden served as vice-president.
The messages from friends and colleagues that I’ve received over the past 15 hours have been humbling. Honored to announce, officially, that I have been nominated to serve as Secretary of State. If confirmed, this is a mission I will take on with my full heart.The messages from friends and colleagues that I’ve received over the past 15 hours have been humbling. Honored to announce, officially, that I have been nominated to serve as Secretary of State. If confirmed, this is a mission I will take on with my full heart.
He is expected to manage a Biden foreign policy agenda that will emphasise re-engaging with Western allies.He is expected to manage a Biden foreign policy agenda that will emphasise re-engaging with Western allies.
Biden has chosen Jake Sullivan, Linda Thomas-Greenfield and Antony Blinken for key rolesBiden has chosen Jake Sullivan, Linda Thomas-Greenfield and Antony Blinken for key roles
Avril Haines was nominated as the first female director of national intelligence. Ms Haines is a former deputy director of the CIA and deputy national security adviser.Avril Haines was nominated as the first female director of national intelligence. Ms Haines is a former deputy director of the CIA and deputy national security adviser.
Alejandro Mayorkas was the first Latino nominated to serve as secretary of homeland security. He previously served as deputy secretary of homeland security under President Obama.Alejandro Mayorkas was the first Latino nominated to serve as secretary of homeland security. He previously served as deputy secretary of homeland security under President Obama.
Jake Sullivan was named White House national security adviser. Mr Sullivan served as Mr Biden's national security adviser during Mr Obama's second term.Jake Sullivan was named White House national security adviser. Mr Sullivan served as Mr Biden's national security adviser during Mr Obama's second term.
Long-time diplomat Linda Thomas-Greenfield was nominated US ambassador to the UN. She also served under President Obama, including as assistant secretary of state for African affairs between 2013 and 2017.Long-time diplomat Linda Thomas-Greenfield was nominated US ambassador to the UN. She also served under President Obama, including as assistant secretary of state for African affairs between 2013 and 2017.
Biden projects stability and familiarityBiden projects stability and familiarity
In his choice of a national security team, Joe Biden has signalled that the US is resuming its conventional international role, after four turbulent years of Donald Trump's America First.In his choice of a national security team, Joe Biden has signalled that the US is resuming its conventional international role, after four turbulent years of Donald Trump's America First.
He's appointing Obama administration veterans to top positions and elevating a long-serving career diplomat sidelined by the Trump administration.He's appointing Obama administration veterans to top positions and elevating a long-serving career diplomat sidelined by the Trump administration.
His pick for secretary of state, Anthony Blinken, is an advocate of global alliances. Mr Blinken will lead the charge to re-establish ties with allies and rejoin agreements and institutions rejected by Trump. And there's no doubt that he'll be speaking for the man in the White House: Mr Blinken has advised Biden on foreign policy for so long he's been described as an alter ego.His pick for secretary of state, Anthony Blinken, is an advocate of global alliances. Mr Blinken will lead the charge to re-establish ties with allies and rejoin agreements and institutions rejected by Trump. And there's no doubt that he'll be speaking for the man in the White House: Mr Blinken has advised Biden on foreign policy for so long he's been described as an alter ego.
Another familiar face is former Secretary of State John Kerry. The president-elect's decision to give him a new cabinet-level position as climate envoy shows he's treating the issue as a significant national security threat.Another familiar face is former Secretary of State John Kerry. The president-elect's decision to give him a new cabinet-level position as climate envoy shows he's treating the issue as a significant national security threat.
But even with the old team this is not going to be Obama 2.0: the landscape has shifted in both America and the world during the last four years. Still, Mr Biden is projecting stability and familiarity, and international leaders know what they will be gettingBut even with the old team this is not going to be Obama 2.0: the landscape has shifted in both America and the world during the last four years. Still, Mr Biden is projecting stability and familiarity, and international leaders know what they will be getting
What about the calls for Trump to concede?What about the calls for Trump to concede?
Donald Trump has now accepted that a formal transition should begin for President-elect Joe Biden to take office.Donald Trump has now accepted that a formal transition should begin for President-elect Joe Biden to take office.
But the president vowed to keep contesting his election defeat and has been pursuing so-far fruitless legal challenges in several states to try to overturn his loss.But the president vowed to keep contesting his election defeat and has been pursuing so-far fruitless legal challenges in several states to try to overturn his loss.
His latest legal setback came on Saturday when a judge dismissed his attempt to have millions of postal votes in Pennsylvania invalidated.His latest legal setback came on Saturday when a judge dismissed his attempt to have millions of postal votes in Pennsylvania invalidated.
It comes as calls are growing for him to accept defeat.It comes as calls are growing for him to accept defeat.
Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a prominent Trump ally, called the president's legal team a "national embarrassment".Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a prominent Trump ally, called the president's legal team a "national embarrassment".
"I have been a supporter of the president's. I voted for him twice. But elections have consequences, and we cannot continue to act as if something happened here that didn't happen," he told ABC."I have been a supporter of the president's. I voted for him twice. But elections have consequences, and we cannot continue to act as if something happened here that didn't happen," he told ABC.
How is President Trump challenging the result?How is President Trump challenging the result?
'Overvoting' and other US fraud claims fact-checked'Overvoting' and other US fraud claims fact-checked
High-profile Trump supporter Stephen Schwarzman, the CEO of investment company Blackstone, also said it was time for Mr Trump to accept he lost.High-profile Trump supporter Stephen Schwarzman, the CEO of investment company Blackstone, also said it was time for Mr Trump to accept he lost.
"Like many in the business community, I am ready to help President-elect Biden and his team as they confront the significant challenges of rebuilding our post-Covid economy," he said in a statement reported by US media."Like many in the business community, I am ready to help President-elect Biden and his team as they confront the significant challenges of rebuilding our post-Covid economy," he said in a statement reported by US media.
How other incumbents left the White House after losingHow other incumbents left the White House after losing
Some Republican lawmakers have also moved to acknowledge Mr Trump's defeat in the election.Some Republican lawmakers have also moved to acknowledge Mr Trump's defeat in the election.