In another move signaling the priority placed by the incoming US presidential administration on climate and sustainability issues, President-elect Biden announced the appointment of sustainable investing veteran Brian Deese to serve as Director of the National Economic Council. The role is a top White House advisory position designed to help inform, design, and coordinate the economic components of the President’s policy agenda.

Deese served under President Obama as Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and senior advisor to the President, playing a lead role in the negotiation of the Paris Agreement, and in the rescue of the U.S. auto industry. Since 2017, Deese has been the Global Head of Sustainable Investing at BlackRock, the world’s largest investment management firm, driving a greater focus on climate and sustainability risk in investment portfolios and creating investment strategies to help accelerate the low-carbon transition.

President-elect Joe Biden said:

“Brian is among the most tested and accomplished public servants in the country — a trusted voice I can count on to help us end the ongoing economic crisis, build a better economy that deals everybody in, and take on the existential threat of climate change in a way that creates good-paying American jobs.”

The Biden-Harris transition team stated that in his new role, Deese will help President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris lift America out of the current economic downturn and build back better — creating an economy that gives every single person across America a fair shot and an equal chance to get ahead.

Biden has promised to return the US to the Paris Agreement immediately upon taking office in January, and has set climate change as a priority for his administration.

The team tweeted, “If we are going to tackle the climate crisis, then solutions must be woven into every aspect of our economic policy. Brian Deese is an economic leader and climate policy expert who will bring his expertise back to the White House as Director of the National Economic Council.”