Hopes rise for US climate shift with Deb Haaland at interior helm

Experts say new interior secretary will renew focus on climate emergency and public lands after years of cuts under Trump

After four years under an administration that denied the climate crisis, opened public lands to oil and gas drilling and stripped protections from national monuments, the US interior department will look radically different with Deb Haaland at its helm.

Haaland, the first Native American cabinet secretary in US history and a member of the Laguna Pueblo, was sworn in to her post last week and has vowed to be a “fierce advocate” for public lands. Wildlife, parks and climate advocacy groups have hailed her confirmation as a major win for public lands and say that under Haaland’s leadership the interior department will renew its focus on fighting the climate emergency.

Related: ‘I’ll be fierce for all of us’: Deb Haaland on climate, Native rights and Biden

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