FIRST ON FOX: Major environmental organizations are quietly playing a key role in the Biden administration’s foreign policy efforts, according to emails reviewed by Fox News Digital.
The emails underscore the influence leftist environmentalists have on the Biden administration through the office of Presidential Special Climate Envoy John Kerry.
On multiple occasions since President Biden took office nearly 20 months ago, green groups have acted as an apparent intermediary for the administration in major international climate negotiations, according to emails obtained in a request for information from the group. Protect the Public’s Trust (PPT) check and shared with Fox News Digital.
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The emails show correspondence between environmental groups and Jesse Young, a senior consultant in Kerry’s office. They offer a rare glimpse of Kerry’s office that has been largely shut up about its internal operations.
“The State Department’s leadership in tackling the global climate crisis is supported by diplomats, negotiators and subject matter experts with diverse backgrounds and decades of knowledge and experience from the public sector, academia, NGOs and the private sector,” a Department State spokesman told Fox News Digital.
On March 8, 2021, Young emailed Alden Meyer – a senior associate of E3G environmental group and climate policy consultant at Performance Partners – and other leaders of the green group, providing them with information about Kerry’s trip and asking their position on a change of leadership in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). By the time, former Australian government official Mathias Cormann had emerged as one of the favorites for the position of OECD Secretary General.
Meyer responded, saying the groups were “weighing on the Cormann front” and relayed a message from the green groups. She also copied a number of other environmental leaders and added that she would inform Young in more detail during “tomorrow’s kitchen cabinet briefing,” an apparent reference to an out-of-the-books group meeting to advise administration officials.
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“Our analysis is that unless the US can be persuaded not to choose Cormann, it will get the job,” the message stated. “It’s coming to the wire and it’s about drawing a line in the sand and saying that anyone with a history of blocking climate action must be disqualified from high-level international positions.”
In response to Meyer’s email, Jake Schmidt, the senior strategic director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s (NRDC) international climate program, said the US must “quickly use its influence at the OECD” to support another candidate.
“The Aussie boy is awful and shouldn’t be in charge of such an important role,” wrote Schmidt. “Making the climate an ‘essential element’ of foreign policy means that climate change must be at the forefront of all decisions”.
OECD member countries finally appointed Cormann to the position a week later. Cormann, however, has selected James Rubin – a former Biden foreign policy adviser, State Department official, Kerry presidential campaign adviser, and lobbyist who has stopped his lobbying tapes to join the administration. Biden, according to the New York Times – to serve as a senior deputy.
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“As a climate change think tank, E3G regularly seeks to educate and inform a wide range of stakeholders about our research on the impacts and solutions to climate change, which pose the most significant threat to health, prosperity and well-being of everyone on the planet, “Meyer told Fox News Digital in an email.
In a separate email exchange on March 30, 2021, Young sent an email to Christy Goldfuss, senior vice president of energy and environmental policy at the Center for American Progress (CAP), referring to a phone call to which they had just participated in the “finance push for the climate.” You said Goldfuss arranged the call.
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Young then said he would be interested in another call with John Podesta – the founder of the CAP who was recently named White House clean energy czar – to “get in sync” on climate finance issues.
In another exchange between Goldfuss and Young on April 26, 2021, Goldfuss invited a State Department official to participate in a “high-level discussion with the EU on climate finance”. The official’s name has been deleted from the email.
“The first hour of the dialogue will be about electrification and electric vehicles. The second two are dedicated to climate finance,” Goldfuss wrote to Young. “The last hour is the high-level dialogue. If you think this might be interesting, you can share [redacted] official email address with me. “
“Facilitating discussions among international thought leaders is an important part of the role of any group of experts seeking to improve the lives of all Americans. At the CAP, we have national security and climate experts,” a spokesperson told Fox News Digital. of the CAP. “It is natural for the CAP to convene meetings that include thought leaders inside and outside the US government to participate in important dialogues when appropriate.”
Finally, on March 11, 2022, Anthony Swift, director of his NRDC Canada project, emailed Young and other State Department and White House officials offering to act as an intermediary in climate discussions. and on “forest carbon accounting practices” with Canada. Swift said he would like to inform the Biden administration about his team’s discussions with the Canadian government’s environment and natural resources ministers.
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“Both ministers expressed interest in addressing these issues, but highlighted a desire to do so bilaterally with the United States,” he wrote. “We would appreciate the opportunity to inform you about Canada’s current forest carbon accounting practices and opportunities to promote Canada’s climate ambition by harmonizing US-Canada forest carbon accounting practices.”
The only other email from the thread included in the inquiry was a follow-up from Swift, which said that Young had informed him that he had included a wrong email address for one of the copied officials.
PPT director Michael Chamberlain said his group’s e-mail records showed a troubling pattern of the Biden administration consulting outside groups on key foreign policy decisions and thereby circumventing oversight requirements.
“The externalization of foreign policy to activist organizations, which these documents indicate may be underway, raises serious legal, ethical and constitutional concerns,” Chamberlain told Fox News Digital.
“The American public expects that foreign policy activities affecting their lives, livelihoods and security will be conducted by the federal government that represents them, not by large special interest groups outside the transparency and oversight requirements they regulate. federal agencies, “he added.
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The NRDC did not respond to multiple requests for comment.