Advisory Council - Environment and Climate Change

Advisory council

Environment and climate change

Our advisory council helps ensure that we’re tackling the most relevant cross-sector issues within our environment and climate change theme.

The council has been carefully curated to ensure a diverse range of perspectives from across the UK, representing the breadth of our membership. 

The role of the council is to:

  • Suggest key topics, challenges, opportunities, and speakers for a range of events and content.
  • Provide feedback on some of the core areas already addressed, and suggest improvements for future plans.
  • Work collaboratively to find new ways to address the biggest cross-sector challenges.

Meetings are held quarterly under the Chatham House Rule and chaired by the theme lead. Invitation to join our councils is at our discretion, as an independent body, with nominations welcome. If you would like further information, or to discuss future opportunities, please email [email protected]

Meet the council

Nick Barter leads climate change within Defra, both mitigation and adaptation. Prior to this, Nick led the development of the Government’s 25 year plan to improve the environment within a generation, and managed the secretariat to the Natural Capital Committee. Nick has 20 years’ experience in environmental policy across Government.  

Jo Coleman is Shell’s UK Energy Transition Manager. Prior to this, Jo was Strategy Director at the Energy Technologies Institute and has 10 years’ experience developing low carbon technologies, energy transition pathways and business strategies. 

Jo is an independent member of the Government's Net Zero Innovation Board and also advises the Energy Futures Lab at Imperial College, Harwell Energy and the British Geological Survey. 

Jo was awarded an OBE in 2018 and is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the IMechE. 

Jane Dennett-Thorpe has served as Ofgem's Head of Decarbonisation and Research since April 2019. Prior to this she held a number of roles in academia and government, in which her most recent role was Deputy Head of Science at Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) from 2014 to 2016.

She has over 15 years’ experience in policy and strategy roles, primarily on the low carbon agenda, for both DECC and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. She also advised the UN Development Programme on energy matters. She has worked in international environment and development organizations in the Netherlands, and has been involved in and set up a number of initiatives to empower individuals and communities through innovations including internet radio and community renewables.

Alyssa Gilbert is the Director of Policy and Translation at the Grantham Institute - Climate change and the Environment at Imperial College London where she connects relevant research across the university with policy-makers and businesses.

Prior to joining the university, she worked at the specialist energy and climate consultancy Ecofys for over 12 years on a range of climate change mitigation and adaptation policy areas. She worked with government clients at the international level, in the UK and for other national governments. She is also a member of NERC’s Advisory network.

Alyssa has also worked as a researcher for the Deputy Mayor of London and as a journalist on Environmental Policy in Brussels. Alyssa has a degree in Natural Sciences.

Debbie is Director of Environmental Policy and Advocacy at WWF-UK. She leads WWF’s advocacy across a range of policy issues but with a particular focus on climate and food and landscapes. She is currently leading on driving WWF’s work around a strong climate outcome from the Glasgow Climate COP and ending deforestation in food supply chains, with a focus on the Amazon.

Her overall passion is to achieve environmental change that stops runaway climate change, deals with climate and environmental inequalities and produces sustainable governmental and business frameworks. Her background is as a trained litigator with significant private practice experience at the Bar as Counsel on many environmental law, public law and human rights cases.   

Sam focuses on UK and EU environmental and safety law, and has been practicing in these fields for over 15 years. He is one of the few lawyers in the UK to be individually ranked in Chambers & Partners for both environmental and health and safety expertise.

His practice area includes waste management, producer responsibility, product liability, pollution liability, environmental permitting, water and drainage, land contamination and health and safety. 

Sam assists clients with all areas of environmental and safety regulation, including in relation to regulatory investigations, prosecutions, compliance issues, liability concerns, and contractual drafting to cover environmental and safety issues. 

Amy leads BEIS’ work on clean growth, green finance and behaviour change for net zero, including a recent focus on green recovery. Since joining the civil service in 2010 following a focus on the regulatory response to the financial crisis in the Financial Services Authority and HMT, Amy has worked in a variety of business, energy and climate policy roles including as private secretary to the then Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Sir Vince Cable.

Since 2013, she has specialised in climate change and energy policy, working on the 2015 Paris negotiations and leading the development of the 2017 Clean Growth Strategy. 

David is Global Director Sustainability, Environment & Human Rights for RB, the leading global health and home hygiene company which reaches billions of people around the world.  

He is responsible for their work on environmental and social sustainability around the world, working with farmers, communities and manufacturers across an international supply alongside RB’s global supply chain and brand teams. His work stems from a personal goal to develop inclusive growth at scale through the organisations and partnerships he is part of.  David has a wealth of leadership experience from major global companies, holding senior roles within Diageo, Kraft Foods and Cadbury, and the UK retailers, Waitrose and the Co-operative Group. 

Niva Thiruchelvam is the Deputy Director, Net Zero in HM Treasury. She was previously the Deputy Director for Education and Skills in HM Treasury. 

Niva has held a number of posts across Whitehall, in which she has advised Cabinet Ministers on a range of international and domestic priorities. She has worked extensively in the centre of Government where she has advised the Prime Minister on home affairs; the Chancellor on education and skills; and supported the Cabinet Secretary in preparing for Cabinet every week, as well as negotiating policy across Government. 

Theme lead

As Event & Content Manager, Stephanie is responsible for producing and managing a wide range of WIG events across a number of networks.

 

Before joining WIG, Stephanie worked in the events industry producing conferences on different aspects of the global sustainability agenda such as circular economy, waste management, and decarbonisation of the shipping industry. Stephanie holds a doctorate from the School of Politics & International Relations at Queen Mary College, and taught on undergraduate courses including ‘The International Political Economy of Development’ prior to embarking on her events career.

 

When she’s not in the office, Stephanie can be found exploring London’s museums and art galleries with her daughter.