Sep 3, 2021 - Energy & Environment

White House adds to its climate science ranks

An exterior view of the White House.
Photo: Daniel Slim/AFP via Getty Images

The White House is boosting its cadre of climate science experts.

Driving the news: Philip Duffy, a physical scientist, has joined the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) as a climate science adviser in the new climate and environment division.

  • Duffy, who will report to Jane Lubchenco, the deputy director of OSTP for climate and the environment, specializes in understanding the consequences of climate change.

Why it matters: In his new role, Duffy will help ensure the White House roots its climate policies in scientific findings.

Context: Duffy is temporarily vacating a position as the head of the Woodwell Climate Research Center on Cape Cod.

  • In 2019, Duffy was among many climate scientists who signed a statement declaring the world “clearly and unequivocally faces a climate emergency.”

Between the lines: Duffy’s hiring signals the growth of the new climate and environment office within OSTP and centralization of climate expertise outside of cabinet agencies and within the White House.

What they’re saying: Duffy told Axios that the administration is likely to make a push to enact natural climate solutions, which would boost nature’s ability to absorb carbon emissions. “It's really important that we have the science to know that those investments are producing the results that we want them to,” he said.

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