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President Biden on Wednesday named former Obama administration official David Turk as his choice for the No. 2 role at the Department of Energy.

Turk has been working at the International Energy Agency, which aims to help countries with energy security and sustainability, since 2016. 

Prior to that, he held roles such as deputy assistant secretary for international climate and technology at the Department of Energy and deputy special envoy for climate change at the State Department. He has also served on the National Security Council. 

He’ll have to be confirmed by the Senate before taking on the new role. 

A White House statement announcing the nominees described Turk and Julie Su, Biden’s pick to be second-in-command at the Labor Department, as “tested and experienced leaders.”

“Turk and Su will help advance President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda by rebuilding America’s middle class and creating an equitable clean energy future we can depend on,” the statement said. 

Turk will serve as second-in-command to Jennifer Granholm, the former Democratic governor of Michigan, if both officials are confirmed. 

They’ll be tasked with implementing Biden’s plans for bringing more clean energy jobs to the country amid the transition from fossil fuels with the ultimate goal of carbon neutrality by the year 2050.

The department also oversees certain national security matters like nuclear weapons as well as several science labs. 

“Growing up in a small Midwestern town, I saw up close our community struggle when the local steel mill downsized and laid off more and more workers,” Turk told The Washington Post in a statement. 

“If confirmed, I’ll carry this experience to my work at the Department of Energy to make sure we listen to the voices of workers and families impacted by changing economic conditions so the clean energy future we build creates good-paying jobs in all corners of our country,” he added.

Tags Department of Energy Energy Department Energy policy International Energy Agency Jennifer Granholm Joe Biden United States Department of Energy

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