Members of the Committee on Climate Change

The committee is chaired by The Rt Hon. the Lord Deben. The committee is responsible for setting the vision and strategic direction of the organisation. It provides independent, expert advice about reducing greenhouse gas emissions to UK and devolved governments and parliaments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The committee ensures the organisation uses public funds responsibly. It is made up of experts in the fields of:

  • climate change
  • science
  • economics
  • behavioural science
  • business

Committee members have a duty to:

  • act impartially and objectively
  • avoid conflicts of interest

Lord Deben


Chairman Lord Deben was the UK’s longest-serving Secretary of State for the Environment (1993 to 1997). He has held several other high-level ministerial posts, including Secretary of State for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1989 to 1993).

He has consistently championed the strong links between environmental concerns and business interests:

  • Lord Deben founded and chairs Sancroft, a corporate responsibility consultancy working with blue-chip companies around the world to help them improve their environmental, social and ethical impact.
  • he is Chairman of Valpak Limited
  • he is Chairman of Personal Investment Management and Financial Advice Association
Deputy chair

Baroness Brown of Cambridge DBE FREng FRS

Deputy chair

Baroness Brown of Cambridge (Julia King) is a crossbench member of the house of lords and an engineer. Her career has included senior engineering and leadership roles in industry and academia.

She also holds the following positions:

  • Chair of the Committee on Climate Change’s Adaptation Sub-Committee
  • Non-executive director of the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult
  • Chair of the Carbon Trust
  • the UK’s Low Carbon Business Ambassador

She was non-executive director of the Green Investment Bank and she led the King Review on decarbonising transport (2008).

She is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and of the Royal Society, and was awarded DBE for services to higher education and technology.

She is a crossbench Peer and a member of the House of Lords European Union Select Committee.

Professor Keith Bell

Keith Bell is a co-Director of the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC) and a Chartered Engineer. In addition to teaching and being involved with energy system research in collaboration with academic and industrial partners, he has a number of additional roles including with:

  • the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult
  • the IET Power Academy
  • the Conseil International des Grands Réseaux Electriques (CIGRE)
  • the European Energy Research Alliance
  • and as ScottishPower Chair in Smart Grids at the University of Strathclyde

Keith has also advised the Scottish Government, Ofgem, BEIS and the Government of Ireland on electricity system issues.

Professor Nick Chater FBA

Nick Chater is Professor of Behavioural Science at Warwick Business School.

He has particular interests in:

  • the cognitive and social foundations of rationality
  • applying behavioural insights to public policy and business

Nick is Co-founder and Director of Decision Technology Ltd, a research consultancy.

He has previously held the posts of Professor of Psychology at both Warwick University and University College London (UCL), and as Associate Editor for the journals: Cognitive Science, Psychological Review, Psychological Science and Management Science.

Professor Piers Forster

Professor Forster is Director of the Priestley International Centre for Climate and Professor of Physical Climate Change at the University of Leeds.

Professor Forster:

  • has played a significant role authoring Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports
  • is a coordinating lead author role for the IPCC’s sixth assessment report
  • established the forest protection and research charity, the United Bank of Carbon
  • has a number of roles advising industry, including membership of the Rolls Royce Environment Advisory Board

Dr Rebecca Heaton FICFor

Rebecca Heaton is responsible for Drax Group’s efforts to mitigate climate change, ensuring that sound science underpins climate change polices and business strategy. She is also responsible for developing sustainability and climate change research programmes.

She has  a 20 year global career working at the interface between business, science and policy. After an early career in academia, she has held senior roles in a number of large energy companies.

A Chartered Forester, her expertise spans:

  • energy
  • climate change and land-use
  • the role business has to play in enabling the UK to decarbonise

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies and a visiting professor at University College London (UCL).

He is widely published on the economics of public policy and is a columnist for the Times.

He has previously held roles as:

  • Director of public spending at HM Treasury
  • Chief Economist at the Department for Education (2000 to 2004)

He was awarded a CBE for services to economics and social science in 2018.

Professor Corinne Le Quéré FRS

Corinne Le Quéré is Professor of Climate Change Science at the University of East Anglia (UEA), where she conducts research on the interactions between climate change and the carbon cycle.

She is also:

  • Director of the annual update of the global carbon budget by the Global Carbon Project (GCP)
  • Chair of the French Haut Conseil pour le climat.