Obama Filling out Cabinet, Will Nominate New Budget Chief, EPA Director and Energy Secretary
(Associated Press/The Washington Post) President Barack Obama is announcing his picks for three Cabinet-level jobs — nominees to run the Energy Department, Environmental Protection Agency and budget office.
Obama says energy secretary nominee Ernest Moniz is a “brilliant scientist” who knows how the U.S. can produce more energy and grow the economy. Moniz will work with EPA nominee Gina McCarthy, whom Obama calls a “straight-shooter.”
…The president will also nominate MIT scientist Ernest Moniz to head the Energy Department and EPA veteran Gina McCarthy to run the environmental agency.
Moniz, 69, oversees MIT’s Energy Initiative, a research group that focuses on innovative ways to produce power while curbing greenhouse gas emissions. But unlike outgoing Energy Secretary Steven Chu, he is also well-versed in the ways of Washington, having served as the Energy Department’s undersecretary in the Clinton administration.
Moniz has also advised Obama on central components of the administration’s energy plan, including a retooling of the country’s stalled nuclear waste program, energy research and development, and unconventional gas.
In a 2009 alumni interview published on Boston College’s website, Moniz noted that he learned to balance both political and scientific demands while working in the Clinton administration. “Physics sometimes looked easy compared to doing the people’s business,” he said.
In nominating McCarthy to be the nation’s top environmental steward, Obama is promoting a climate change champion and a 25-year veteran of environmental policy and politics. McCarthy has served under both Republicans and Democrats, and is known for a matter-of-fact approach appreciated by both businesses and environmental advocacy groups.
Among her past bosses: former Massachusetts governor and Obama’s Republican presidential opponent Mitt Romney, for whom she was a special adviser on climate and environmental issues. READ MORE and MORE (Renewable Fuels Association) and MORE (Biofuels Digest)