The brief will be folded into an expanded Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy under Greg Clark.
Ed Miliband, the former energy and climate secretary under Labour, called the move ‘plain stupid’.
It comes at a time when campaigners are urging the government to ratify the Paris climate change deal.
In his statement, Mr Clark appeared keen to calm concerns about the priority given to tackling global warming.
He said: ‘I am thrilled to have been appointed to lead this new department charged with delivering a comprehensive industrial strategy, leading government’s relationship with business, furthering our world-class science base, delivering affordable, clean energy and tackling climate change.’
Meanwhile, Andrea Leadsom, who ran against Theresa May for the Conservative leadership, is the new environment secretary.
Ms Leadsom succeeds Liz Truss, who is taking over as secretary of state for justice after a two-year tenure at the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).
One of the most pressing items on the environment agenda is the ratification of the Paris climate deal, which was inked last year.