Podesta’s first day as US global climate boss

By Sara Schonhardt | 03/07/2024 06:28 AM EST

The veteran political operator is now leading the country’s international climate efforts.

John Podesta casts a shadow.

John Podesta at the COP27 climate summit in Egypt in 2022. Nariman El-Mofty/AP

White House climate adviser John Podesta took on a new job Wednesday, without giving up his old one.

The veteran Democratic operative is already working to ensure hundreds of billions of dollars in incentives under President Joe Biden’s massive Inflation Reduction Act climate law are put toward the clean energy transition.

Now he’ll add international climate diplomacy to his roster, a sprawling portfolio that was held for the past three years by Biden’s first climate envoy, John Kerry — who exited his wood-grained office in the State Department for the last time Wednesday.


That puts Podesta in a leading role on U.S. climate policy — at home and overseas — during an election year that could determine whether the country’s international pledge to move away from fossil fuels survives or dies.