New Ambassador for Climate Change

Joint media release

  • Senator the Hon Bob Carr, Minister for Foreign Affairs
  • The Hon Greg Combet MP, Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency

13 May 2012

Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet, and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Bob Carr, today announced that Dr Justin Lee has been appointed to be Australia's Ambassador for Climate Change.

The Ambassador for Climate Change is the lead Australian negotiator within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, based in the International Division of the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency.

Dr Lee has just completed his appointment as High Commissioner to Bangladesh and brings to his new role a direct understanding of the impacts of climate change on vulnerable communities.

Dr Lee has also served in senior positions in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Canberra and overseas.

"There are few more urgent challenges for the world than climate change," Senator Carr said.

"I look forward to working with Dr Lee in steering Australia's efforts towards the realisation of a global solution to the grim reality of climate change."

Mr Combet also welcomed Dr Lee's engagement in continuing to take forward Australia's agenda in the international arena.

"Australia is well regarded in the international community as playing its full and fair part in global efforts to reduce emissions," Mr Combet said.

"Dr Lee will be at the helm of Australia's ongoing negotiations to support a robust, binding new global agreement to provide a significant outcome for global carbon markets over the short, medium and long term.

"I am confident Dr Lee will excel in this challenging role, securing outcomes that will help efforts to tackle climate change and help establish Australia as a key player in a new global clean energy economy."

Senator Carr also thanked outgoing Ambassador for Climate Change, Ms Louise Hand, for her significant contribution in that role since 2009. Ms Hand is now Australia's High Commissioner to Canada.

"As Ambassador for Climate Change, High Commissioner Hand was integral to Australia's contribution to international negotiations, including the Durban outcome.

"I would like to personally thank High Commissioner Hand for her commendable efforts," Senator Carr said.

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