Biden environmental aide leaving White House

David Kieve is set to leave his role as public engagement director at the White House's Council on Environmental Quality, the CEQ confirmed Monday.

Kieve, the husband of White House communications director Kate BedingfieldKate BedingfieldWhite House spokesperson: Biden laid a foundation for progress but has more to do Overnight Energy & Environment — Biden seeks to reverse Trump on Arctic drilling Biden environmental aide leaving White House MORE, was one of the Biden campaign’s point people on outreach to environmentalist and climate groups during the 2020 campaign. His departure comes days after the exit of another CEQ official, Senior Director of Environmental Justice Cecilia Martinez.

“By having both a great understanding of policy and a knack for bringing people together and listening, David has helped ensure that the President’s climate and environmental agenda reflects the ideas and needs of people and communities whose voices haven’t always been heard,” CEQ Chair Brenda MalloryBrenda MalloryOvernight Energy & Environment — Biden seeks to reverse Trump on Arctic drilling Biden environmental aide leaving White House Overnight Energy & Environment: White House to restore parts of Trump-lifted environmental protections law MORE said in a statement Monday. “David has been the type of person to open the White House door a little wider, and to invite people in to the President’s vision for a cleaner, healthier, and more equitable future.”

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“David is a critical member of the Biden Administration, who has worked tirelessly on the President’s behalf since the early days of the primary campaign. His advocacy and work on climate issues has made him an important ambassador for the President to the climate community, rallying their support behind our ambitious agenda to tackle the climate crisis, the existential threat of our time.”

The announcement comes during a critical period for the Biden administration’s environmental agenda. In December, Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinEven working piecemeal, Democrats need a full agenda for children Poll: 30 percent of Americans say they approve of the job Congress is doing Bipartisan Senate group discusses changes to election law MORE (D-W.Va.) announced he would not back Democrats' climate and social spending bill, which contains one of the administration’s most ambitious environmental priorities.

A Republican takeover of either chamber of Congress in November's midterm elections would likely limit the administration’s environmental agenda to executive actions and the work of federal regulatory agencies.

The CEQ has taken the lead on much of the nonlegislative work on the nonlegislative implementation of that agenda. In October, it proposed to restore parts of the bedrock National Environmental Protection Act that the Trump administration rolled back.