Energy Department Closes Office Working on Climate Change Abroad


By: - Climate DepotJune 15, 2017 1:08 PM

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, third from right, snaps a picture with other energy ministers at an international clean energy conference in Beijing last week. CreditNg Han Guan/Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Energy Department is closing an office that works with other countries to develop clean energy technology, another sign of the Trump administration’s retreat on climate-related activities after its withdrawal from the Paris agreement this month.

The 11 staff members of the Office of International Climate and Technology were told this month that their positions were being eliminated, according to current and former agency employees. The office was formed in 2010 to help the United States provide technical advice to other nations seeking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The small office also played a lead role preparing for the annual Clean Energy Ministerial, a forum in which the United States, China, India and other countries shared insights on how best to promote energy efficiency, electric vehicles and other solutions to climate change.

Word of the closing came right before Rick Perry, the energy secretary, attended the latest Clean Energy Ministerial meeting in Beijing on June 6 to 8, agency employees said.