Senator John Kerry (D-MA) nominated for Secretary of State

President Obama today nominated Sen. John F. Kerry to be the next secretary of state.

Kerry, who is a Massachusetts Democrat, chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. This selection will most likely be a certain confirmation. As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for almost 30 years, the past four as chairman, Kerry is a highly respected figure on the world stage.

Kerry also has displayed a particular interest in HIV/AIDS and climate change. Reports in the press say he is likely to give special emphasis to those issues.  Kerry attended the 1992 U.N. environment conference in Brazil and will take over Hillary Clinton's Global Climate Change and Clean Air Initiative.  The coalition includes the EPA Administrator and representatives from four other countries, and is designed to address "short-lived climate pollutants." According to the State Department, these pollutants "account for more than a third of current global warming."

Kerry told the U.S. Senate in August that climate change is "of as significant a level of importance" as Syria or Iran's nuclear ambition, as it "affects ecosystems on which the oceans and the land depend."  He also lambasted climate deniers this year when he stated, "The falsehood of today's naysayers is only matched by the complacency of our political system... We should be compelled to fight today's insidious conspiracy of silence on climate change."

With regard to HIV/AIDS, Kerry has argued strongly that the total control of the epidemic is within our grasp.  In a November 30, 2012 speech for World AIDS Day, Kerry said, "With an end on the horizon, now is the time to resolve to push even harder, both at home and abroad, to see the fight to eradicate HIV/AIDS cross the finish line."

Planet Aid wishes Senator Kerry all the best in the confirmation process.