Former Obama Climate Director to grow U.S. operations of Pollination


5 May 2020

Former Energy and Climate Change Senior Director in the Obama Administration, John E Morton, has joined new global firm, Pollination. 

Pollination is a specialist climate change advisory and investment firm, with global offices and an expanding U.S. footprint.  

As Partner in the firm, John will be building a team in Washington D.C. and leading Pollination’s work in designing and structuring blended finance partnerships and innovative investment vehicles, helping to mobilize institutional capital flows into climate and natural capital sectors.  

John joins North American team members including Partner Rick Saines and Executive Director Marisa Martin, who were part of Pollination’s September 2019 launch in the U.S. and who previously led Baker McKenzie’s acclaimed North American change practice.  

“The transition to a net zero carbon economy is the most predictable and consequential economic transformation in human history. Pollination has been designed to accelerate that transition – the timing is urgent and right.” John said. 

Covid-19 has tragically revealed the costs and dangers of failing to plan for the inevitable,” he said. 

A global threat in our globalized world, Covid-19 resembles the canary in the coal mine for the climate crisis. 

“I’m delighted to be working with forward-thinking colleagues, partners, and clients to further expedite the transition to a net zero emissions future. While climate change clearly represents a tremendous global challenge, it also represents an unprecedented economic opportunity for governments, industries and companies that lead the way,” he said. 

John brings more than twenty-five years experience in emerging markets, investment finance, and economic and environmental policy. A former private equity investor, he was a Presidential Appointee in the Obama Administration and served in a variety of roles including as White House Senior Director for Energy and Climate Change at the National Security Council.  

Earlier in the Administration, Mr. Morton served for nearly six years as Vice President for Investment Policy, Chief of Staff and Chief Operating Officer of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). At OPIC, John managed the Agency’s $20 billion investment portfolio in over 100 countries. He spearheaded the growth of the Agency’s activities in renewable energy and natural resources.  

Most recently, John was architect and coordinator of the Climate Finance Partnership (CFP) – a first-of-its-kind emerging markets climate investment fund that has brought together the Governments of France and Germany, a group of leading global philanthropies, and BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager. 

“Climate change demands creative solutions and creative capital alignment.”  

“At Pollination, I look forward to working with partners in designing and implementing the next generation of investment solutions,” John said. 

With John joining the team we’re excited to scale our impact, providing our clients with world-class advice, and developing the innovative, collaborative models we need to deploy capital to  essential, yet hard to transform sectors of the economy,” Partner Rick Saines said.      

Founding Partner, Martijn Wilder AM added: “John has been leading on climate and natural capital challenges for decades and we are extremely pleased to welcome him to the Partner team at Pollination.” 

“In shocking circumstances right now, we’re reminded of the importance of building resilience in our economiesJohn is joining a growing global team committed to delivering a more resilient future,Martijn said. 

In addition to his role at Pollination, John is a Senior Fellow with the European Climate Foundation, a Senior Fellow at the HHL Graduate School of Management in Leipzig Germany, and a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center. 

For further information, please contact:
Media – Kate Rayson
+61 439 959 034



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