MATTHEW LEE Associated Press Writer WA S H I N G T O N
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton appointed a special envoy Monday for climate change as the Obama administration moves to restore America's credentials in environmental policy, U.S. officials familiar with the decision said. Clinton named Todd Stern, a former White House assistant who was the chief U.S. negotiator at the Kyoto Protocol talks in her husband's administration, to the post, the U.S. officials said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity ahead of a planned midday State Department ceremony where Clinton will announce the appointment. The appointment comes as President Barack Obama announced new policies to allow states greater latitude in limiting greenhouse gas emissions. The Bush administration had come under fire for failing to act on climate change, walking away from the Kyoto Protocol on grounds it favored large developing nations like China and India, and refusing to allow states to bolster some environmental regulations. Stern, currently a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and a partner in the WilmerHale law firm, served in the Clinton administration from 1993 to 2001. He first worked in the White House, handling the Kyoto Protocol and follow-up talks in Buenos Aires and coordinating the president's Initiative on Global Climate Change. He later worked at the Treasury, where he was a senior adviser to the secretary. After his Clinton administration stint, Stern taught at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.