Members of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution

The Commission has been Chaired by Sir John Lawton CBE FRS, previously Chief Executive of NERC, since 2005. 

Members of the Royal Commission are drawn from a variety of backgrounds in academia, industry and public life. They contribute a wide range of expertise and experience in science, medicine, engineering, law, economics and business.  Members serve part-time as individuals, not as representatives of organisations or professions. The standard term of appointment is 3 years but Members may be re-appointed. They are required to declare in a register of Members' interests any interests which may conflict with their role as Commission Members.

Members of the Commission and its Secretariat photographed in 2009 Yolanda Rizzi, Secretariat Professor Scott Professor Depledge Laura Pleasants, Secretariat Professor Warren Rachael Yokoo-Laurence, Secretariat Jon Freeman, Secretariat Professor Lee Professor Liss Noel Nelson, Secretariat Professor Lawton Professor MacKerron John Roberts, Secretariat Professor Petts Tom Eddy, former Secretary to the Commission Professor Graham-Bryce Professor Jowell Professor Cumpsty Professor Roberts Professor Rayner Professor Matthews

Members of the RCEP and its Secretariat, photographed in July 2009

Chairman of the RCEP: Professor Sir John Lawton CBE FRS

  • President, Council of the British Ecological Society, 2005-2007
  • Chief Executive, Natural Environment Research Council, 1999-2005
  • Director (and founder), Natural Environment Research Council Centre for Population Biology at Imperial College, Silwood Park, 1989-1999
  • Member, Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, 1996-1999
  • Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Reader, Professor of Biology, University of York, 1972-1989
  • Demonstrator in Animal Ecology, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, 1968-1971
  • Chairman, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, 1993-1998
  • Vice-President, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, 1999 -
  • Past Vice-President, British Trust for Ornithology 1999-2007
  • Trustee, WWF-UK, 2002-2008; Fellow of WWF-UK 2008-
  • Foreign Associate, US National Academy of Sciences 2008
  • Foreign Honorary Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences 2008

View Sir John's register of interests (PDF, 44KB)

Professor Nicholas Cumpsty

  • Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Imperial College, 2005-2008
  • Emeritus Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Imperial College, 2008-
  • Member, Defence Science Advisory Council, 2005-
  • Visiting Professor, Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2005-
  • Chief Technologist, Rolls-Royce plc, 2000-2005
  • Lecturer, Reader, Professor, University of Cambridge, 1972-1999
  • Director of the Whittle Laboratory, University of Cambridge, 1989-1999

View Professor Cumpsty's register of interests (PDF, 42KB)

Professor Michael H. Depledge

  • Professor of Environment and Human Health, Peninsula Medical School, Universities of Exeter and Plymouth.
  • Former Keeley Visiting Fellow, Wadham College, University of Oxford, 2006-2007
  • Honorary Visiting Professor, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford
  • Senior Science Advisor, Plymouth Marine Laboratory, 2005-2007.
  • Chief Scientific Advisor, Environment Agency of England and Wales, 2002-2006.
  • Vice-Chairman, Science Advisory Committee, European Commission, DG-Research, 2006-
  • Board Member, Natural England, 2006-
  • Council Member, Natural Environment Research Council, 2003-2006.
  • Honorary Professor, School of Earth Sciences and Engineering, Imperial College, 2002-
  • Honorary Visiting Scientist, School of Public Health, Harvard University, USA, 2000-2003

View Professor Depledge's register of interests (PDF, 68KB)

Dr Ian Graham-Bryce CBE

  • Principal Emeritus, University of Dundee
  • Chairman, East Malling Trust for Horticultural Research
  • Principal and Vice-Chancellor, University of Dundee, 1994-2000
  • Convener, Committee of Scottish Higher Education Principals, 1998-2000
  • President, Scottish Association for Marine Science, 2000-2004; and currently Honorary Vice-President
  • President, British Crop Protection Council, 1996-2000
  • Council Member, Natural Environment Research Council, 1989-1996
  • Head, Environmental Affairs Division, Shell International, 1986-1994
  • President, Association of Applied Biologists, 1988-1989
  • Director, East Malling Research Station, 1979-1986
  • President, Society of Chemical Industry, 1982-1984

View Dr Graham-Bryce's register of interests (PDF, 45KB)

Professor Jeffrey Jowell QC SJD (not photographed)

  • Professor of Law, University College London
  • UK’s Member on the Council of Europe’s Commission for Democracy Through Law (“The Venice Commission”)
  • Chair, British Waterways Ombudsman Committee
  • Former non-executive Director of the Office of Rail Regulation
  • Practising barrister

View Professor Jowell's register of interests (PDF, 41KB)

Professor Maria Lee

  • Professor of Law at University College London
  • Member of the London Sustainable Development Commission
  • Member of the academic panel of the barristers’ chambers Francis Taylor Buildings

View Professor Lee's register of interests (PDF, 86KB)

Professor Peter Liss CBE FRS

  • Professor of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, 1985-
  • Chair, Scientific Committee of the International Geosphere – Biosphere Programme (IGBP), 1993-1997
  • Chair, International Scientific Steering Committee for Surface Ocean – Lower Atmosphere Study (SOLAS), 2002-2007
  • Council Member, Natural Environment Research Council, 1990-1995
  • Independent Member, Inter-Agency Committee on Marine Science and Technology,  2000-2008
  • Chair, Royal Society Global Environmental Research Committee, 2007-
  • Council Member, Marine Biological Association of the UK
  • Chair, Higher Education Funding Council’s Research Assessment Exercise Panel in Earth and Environmental Sciences, 2001
  • Guest Professor, Ocean University of Qingdao, China
  • President, Challenger Society for Marine Science, 2006-2008
  • Chair, European Research Council Advanced Grants Panel in Earth System Science, 2008-

View Professor Liss' register of interests (PDF, 62KB)

Professor Gordon MacKerron Dec 2008- Economic Advisor to the RCEP)

  • Currently Director, Sussex Energy Group, SPRU (Science and Technology Policy Research), University of Sussex
  • Chair of the Committee on Radioactive Waste Management (2003-)
  • From June to December 2001: secondment to the PIU, Cabinet Office, as Deputy leader of the UK Government's Energy Review team
  • Chaired the Energy Panel, DTI/OST Technology Foresight Programme (1995-98)


Professor Peter Matthews OBE

  • In 2006 he joined the Port of London Authority as a Board Member and was appointed Chairman of the Northern Ireland Authority for Energy Regulation (and Chair of the NI Authority for Utility Regulation in 2007)
  • Board of the Environment Agency and Chair of its Audit Committee (2000-2006)
  • Former Deputy Managing Director for Anglian Water International
  • Past President of the European Water Association, Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management and Past Chair of the Society for the Environment
  • Served on the Board of Anglia Ruskin University

View Professor Matthews' register of interests (PDF, 95KB)

Professor Judith Petts

  • Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Knowledge Transfer), University of Birmingham, 2008-
  • Head, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, 2002-2007
  • Chair of Environmental Risk Management, University of Birmingham, 1999-
  • Member, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Societal Issues Panel, 2007
  • Council Member, National Environment Research Council, 2000-2006
  • Member, Environmental Advisory Board, Veolia Environmental, 1999-
  • Member, Royal Society Science in Society Group, 2005-2008
  • Member, Higher Education Funding Council’s Research Assessment Exercise Panel in Geography and Environmental Studies, 2005-
  • Member, Office of Science and Innovation Sciencewise Strategy Group, 2004-2008
  • Member, Environmental Advisory Group, Onyx Environmental Plc, 1999-
  • Former Specialist Advisor House of Commons Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Committee and House of Lords Sub-Committee
  • Member, Council of the Institute of Environmental Assessment, 1990-2000

View Professor Petts' register of interests (PDF, 105KB)

Professor Steve Rayner

  • Director, James Martin Institute for Science and Civilization, Professor of Science and Civilization, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, and Professorial Fellow of Keble College
  • Professor of Environment and Public Affairs, Columbia University, USA, 1999-2003
  • Chief Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, USA, 1996-1999
  • Director, Economic and Social Research Council Science in Society Programme, 2001-2007
  • Member, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
  • Past President of the Sociology and Social Policy Section of the British Association

View Professor Rayner's register of interests (PDF, 97KB)

Professor Michael Roberts CBE

  • Ministerial appointee to the Veterinary Residues Committee and a Non-Executive Director of the Defra sponsored National Non-Food Crops Centre (NNFCC)
  • Chief Executive of the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) Central Science Laboratory from 2001 to May 2008
  • Former Director of the Natural Environment Research Council’s (NERC) Institute of Terrestrial Ecology (ITE)
  • Former Director of NERC’s Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH)
  • Member of the Yorkshire and Humber Science and Innovation Council from 2005 to 2008

View Professor Roberts' register of interests (PDF, 94KB)

Professor Joanne Scott

  • Professor of European Law, and Vice-Dean for International Links, at the Faculty of Laws, University College London
  • Member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Environmental Law and the Journal of International Economic Law
  • Visiting Professor at Columbia Law School
  • Former Visiting Professor at Harvard and Georgetown Law Schools

View Professor Scott's register of interests (PDF, 41KB)

Professor Lynda Warren FiBIOL

  • Emeritus Professor of Environmental Law, University of Aberystwyth
  • Deputy Chair, Joint Nature Conservation Committee
  • Member, Committee on Radioactive Waste Management
  • Board Member, British Geological Survey
  • Board Member, Environment Agency, 2000-2006
  • Chair, Wales Coastal and Maritime Partnership
  • Chair, Salmon and Freshwater Fisheries Review, 1998-2000
  • Former Member, Radioactive Waste Management Advisory Committee 1994-2003
  • Former Member, Countryside Council for Wales 1991-2003
  • Trustee, Field Studies Council
  • Trustee, Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales
  • Former Trustee, WWF-UK

View Professor Warren's register of interests (PDF, 52KB)

Page last updated: 29 July 2009

The Royal Commission for Environmental Pollution