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Does John Kerry have the answer to the climate crisis?

Former US Secretary of State John Kerry formally signing the Paris Agreement April 22, 2016 at U.N. headquarters.
Former US Secretary of State John Kerry formally signing the Paris Agreement April 22, 2016 at U.N. headquarters. Copyright SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP or licensors
Copyright SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP or licensors
By Doloresz Katanich with AP & AFP
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Young environmental activists have responded to the US special climate envoy on Twitter.


John Kerry has been announced as the incoming special climate envoy to US president-elect Joe Biden. Over the next few years, he will take the lead on fighting for the environment as part of the national security team.

Joe Biden made bold pledges in his campaign, repeatedly stating that climate issues would take pride of place in his foreign and national security strategy.

His promise to rejoin the Paris Agreement on his first day in office signals a return to global engagement from the US, especially when it comes to protecting the planet.

Kerry, a veteran politician, who served as Secretary of State under President Obama between 2013 and 2017, is no newcomer to climate diplomacy. He is one of the architects of the Paris Agreement and brought about cooperation on climate change with the other biggest polluter of the world, China.

The Democrat is highly critical of the Trump administration.

"In the US today, the fastest growing job is not the coal industry, that Donald Trump keeps insisting on trying to bust," Kerry said last year at the Climate and Security Conference in Berlin, Germany. "The fastest growing job in the US is solar power technician, the second [] wind power technician."

In 2019, he launched World War Zero, which brought together world leaders and celebrities to push for action on the climate emergency.

Mark Ralston/Pool Photo via AP
Former US Secretary of State John Kerry became the highest-ranking American official to visit Antarctica in 2016.Mark Ralston/Pool Photo via AP

The veteran politician tweeted to say that he is going to partner with "young leaders of the climate movement".

However, activists like Greta Thunberg replied with a somewhat lukewarm reaction.

Greta Thunberg's reactionTwitter

Ugandan climate justice activist Vanessa Nakate went even further, raising the question to the Biden administration, "Are you on our side?"

Climate activist Vanessa Nakate's tweet about her letter to the incoming US administrationTwitter

According to Youth Climate Advocate Nathan Méténier, "young people should be involved in the processes when it comes to climate policies.

"Because as we all know, what happens in the US has huge consequences on the world, and not just here in Europe," he told Euronews Living.

Click on the video above to learn more about the task Kerry is faced with.

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