Under Markey questioning, Craft agrees to recuse herself from any UN discussions and meetings on coal


VIDEO: https://bit.ly/2x20X1I


Washington (June 19, 2019) – At today’s Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nomination of Ambassador to Canada Kelly Knight Craft to be the new United Nations Ambassador, Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) questioned Craft about how her family’s nearly one billion-dollar coal investments might conflict with any climate change discussions she would have in a potential future role at the United Nations. In May, Senators Markey, Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) called on Craft to answer questions about her views on the Paris climate agreement and international climate policy, as well as clarify potential conflicts of interest. Craft sent a response to the Senators today at 9:59 AM, fifteen minutes before the hearing.


“It is lamentable that as the world faces an existential crisis in climate change the Trump administration has nominated someone who is so clearly conflicted in her financial interests,” said Senator Markey after the hearing. “I will be following up with Ambassador Craft to get more specific clarification about her recusal, as well as her views on the role that the burning of fossil fuels plays in the worsening of climate change.”


Senator Markey: “Will you recuse yourself from any fossil fuel-related discussions in terms of their impact on climate change in your tenure at the United Nations?”


Hon. Craft: “Senator, as we discussed, where there is the issue of coal and or fossil fuels, I will recuse myself in meetings through the UN.”


And then later in the hearing:


Senator Markey: “Do you think that the United States can effectively steer the debate on climate change if we are the only country that’s withdrawn from the Paris agreement? What role could you play, as a business example, as a businesswoman, if you withdrew from the board in terms of influencing the decisions of that board? Doesn’t’ that put you in a very awkward position?” 


Hon. Craft: “Senator, no. We withdrew from the Paris agreement because we feel like we don’t have to be part of an agreement to be leaders.”