Statement on President-Elect Biden Tapping Climate Champion Samantha Power to Lead USAID, Elevates Position to National Security Council

Today, Lori Lodes, executive director of Climate Power 2020, issued the following statement on President-elect Joe Biden’s decision to nominate former United Nations Ambassador and Climate Power Advisory Board Member Samantha Power to head USAID:

“President-elect Joe Biden’s appointment of Samantha Power to lead USAID shows his strong commitment to integrating climate leadership throughout his administration. There is no one more qualified to take on the crises facing communities across the globe than Power. With her deep understanding of climate change and international cooperation, and years as a principal voice on climate, Power is an inspired choice.”

Humanitarian aid and climate change are inextricably linked. The climate crisis is increasing the frequency and severity of natural disasters and extreme weather, driving migration, and threatening food security around the world.

Power has a strong record in the fight against climate change. As U.N. Ambassador, she led the international effort to ratify the Paris climate agreement and played a key role in negotiating and implementing the Sustainable Development goals. Power also coordinated the international response to the Ebola crisis, an invaluable experience as the world confronts the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. She is also a member of Climate Power’s Advisory Board.

Biden reportedly plans to elevate the USAID administrator role to have a seat on his National Security Council. This comes after Biden made history by naming former Secretary of State John Kerry to fill the first climate-focused role on the NSC. Biden’s national security approach to climate change underscores his deep understanding of the wide-reaching effects of the crisis.