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Chris Stark to step down as Chief Executive of the CCC

Chris Stark will leave the Climate Change Committee after serving as Chief Executive for the past six years. He has led the organisation since April 2018, and has been the chief climate adviser to Government and Parliament over a period where the UK has substantially extended its climate ambitions, in response to the Committee’s advice. Chris will join the Carbon Trust as Chief Executive later this year.

Chris Stark

Under Chris’s leadership, the Committee recommended a UK Net Zero target for greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Net Zero was put into law under Prime Minister Theresa May, making the UK the first major economy in the world to do so.

In 2020, the Climate Change Committee provided independent advice on the detailed path to Net Zero for the UK, in the Sixth Carbon Budget advice. The UK’s Sixth Carbon Budget was legislated by Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Government, in June 2021.

In 2021, the Climate Change Committee published the UK’s third Climate Change Risk Assessment. This outlined the priorities for the Governments of the UK, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland to respond to the climate risks faced in the UK.

Chris has overseen the production of over 100 publications, including six UK progress reports. He supported Lord Deben in the last five years in the position of Chair, and Professor Piers Forster in his current role as interim Chair. 

“The Committee is incredibly grateful to Chris for his contribution over the last six years. His supportive leadership for the secretariat has helped us develop a world-class analytical team and deepened our analysis of the UK response to climate change. Acting as a powerful voice for the Committee, he has ensured our advice has been heard widely and with style.

“Chris has been a dedicated public servant, working with multiple Governments of the UK, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. He has ensured the Committee has provided apolitical, science-based advice of the highest quality. We have achieved a lot in his tenure. He has been great to work alongside and we wish him the best in his exciting next role.”

Professor Piers Forster, Interim Chair of the Climate Change Committee

“It’s been a privilege to lead the Climate Change Committee team over such an important period. I’m so proud of the analysis and advice we have produced in the last six years.

“The dedication and professionalism of the CCC team, coupled with the vast knowledge of our Committee members are central to the organisation’s success. The CCC is in great shape for its next phase of work. I’ll continue to be one of its loudest supporters.”

Chris Stark, Chief Executive of the Climate Change Committee

“I want to thank Chris Stark for his work at the Climate Change Committee and I wish him all the best for the future.

“During his leadership, he has seen many advances – including becoming the first major economy to put our net zero commitments into law, with the UK becoming the first country in the G20 to halve its carbon emissions.” 

Energy Security Secretary, Claire Coutinho

Notes to editors

  • The recruitment for the next Chief Executive of the Climate Change Committee will be managed by Saxton Bampfylde. The search is now underway, and the advert can be found on their website.
  • Chris Stark’s final day in the role will be Friday, April 26. The CCC’s Chief Economist James Richardson, will serve as interim Chief Executive until a permanent replacement is recruited.
  • Chris is also an Honorary Professor at Glasgow University and sits on the Boards of the V&A Dundee and climate charity Murmur.
  • Chris was previously the Director of Energy and Climate Change in the Scottish Government and has held roles a variety of roles in Government in HM Treasury and the (then) Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.