Daniel Kammen, UC Berkeley professor of Energy and Director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Lab, has publicly resigned his role as State Department science envoy. The U.S. Science Envoy Program, an outreach initiative started by the Obama administration, sends top scientists abroad to promote the country’s commitment to science and technology as tools for diplomacy; envoys typically serve for one year. Ever the overachiever (Go Bears!), Kammen embelished his resignation letter on Wednesday with an acrostic message. See if you can spot it in his letter below.
Mr. President, I am resigning as Science Envoy. Your response to Charlottesville enables racism, sexism, & harms our country and planet. pic.twitter.com/eWzDc5Yw6t
— Daniel M Kammen (@dan_kammen)
This isn’t the first time Professor Kammen has been critical of the administration. In June, Kammen, who is said to be in discussions with Jerry Brown about starting a climate change research institute, talked to CALIFORNIA about the administration’s resistance to climate action.
“He’s been steadily chipping away [at greenhouse gas emission standards], so walking away from Paris doesn’t mean much in terms of impacts,” Kammen says. “In any case, the signatories aren’t going to meet their targets [keeping global temperature rises to “well below” two degrees Celsius above pre-Industrial Revolution numbers, with a goal of no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius]. What withdrawal does establish is that the U.S. is no longer a major player in climate change response and policy, and that will affect where the investments go. China has just invested [more than] $300 billion in clean energy. Ultimately, that’s going to translate to about a trillion dollars in lost job opportunities for the United States.”