German diplomacy to pivot towards tackling climate change | Economic news

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s diplomatic priorities will shift to tackling the threat of climate change as one of the key global challenges of the 21st century, Germany’s foreign minister said Wednesday.

Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, a member of the Green Green Party, said Germany’s 226 diplomatic missions around the world would become “climate embassies”.

This will require “reorganization and reallocation of resources”, she said, including the appointment of a new German climate envoy, former Greenpeace chief Jennifer Morgan.

Tuesday’s announcement that Morgan would take a high-level government post prompted grumbling in Berlin, including from opposition politicians who questioned why an American activist had been chosen for the post.

Baerbock dismissed the criticism, saying Morgan was the right person for the job.

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Morgan said she plans to use her long experience in the environmental movement and think tanks “to support and promote German and EU goals around the world.”

“The energy transition is clearly a soft power of Germany, and I will actively use it,” she said, referring to efforts by Europe’s largest economy to phase out nuclear power this year, end the use of coal by the end of the decade and use only renewable energy by 2045.

Morgan said the move to a high-level government job – her US counterpart will be US climate envoy John Kerry – after long criticizing countries for not doing enough to curb climate change was ” a once-in-a-lifetime chance” to pursue an issue she has focused on for 30 years.

Baerbock said she would lead the German delegation to this year’s United Nations climate conference, to be held in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, in November.

Follow all AP stories on climate change at https://apnews.com/hub/climate.

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Teresa H. Sadler