While IEEP remains more than ever committed to contribute to the debate and realisation of a strong and sustainable Europe, it recognises that the UK is entering a critical phase in the creation and implementation of key environmental policies and targets.
This is occurring within a much stronger devolved framework, with distinctive approaches in the four nations. It is accompanied by increased UK international ambition in relation to climate and biodiversity.
The volume and significance of the decisions due over the next few years is striking. At the same time there is a tension between the case for staying in close step with EU policy, the foundation of most environmental legislation in the UK, and the desire in some quarters to establish distinctively different approaches.
The Institute hopes to play an increased role in the analysis, reflection and debate that will accompany these changes. To lead this expanded programme of work, Kaley Hart has been appointed as the new Director for IEEP in the UK from 3 May.
Amongst key themes for the coming years will be anticipated divergence in environmental policy-both between the UK and the EU and within the UK. A new project launched this year will examine the directions of travel and issues raised.
In taking up this role, Kaley Hart said: “To address the pressing environmental and climate challenges we face globally, it is important that the UK pursues an ambitious policy agenda. The changing political landscape offers the four UK nations the opportunity to be bold with their environmental ambitions, to make policies and laws more relevant for the UK context and be a world leader in environmental and sustainability policy. I look forward to working with colleagues and partners to develop the evidence base in the UK to inform and influence this agenda.”
Malini Mehra, Chair of the Trustees of IEEP UK, said: “With Kaley’s appointment as Director of the UK office, IEEP has a leader with established credentials in both UK and European environmental policy, who can help deliver IEEP’s mission to improve environmental outcomes in the continent of Europe. As the UK strikes out on its own post-Brexit to create new laws and institutions to protect our environment, IEEP is revitalising our UK operations for greater impact. Under Kaley’s leadership we look forward to deploying IEEP’s considerable policy expertise across the European continent to inform and improve domestic policymaking and analysis, raising standards and setting new environmental benchmarks with our partners for the benefit of all.”
Hans Wolters, Chair of IEEP Board, welcomed Kaley Hart’s appointment: “With a new Director of the UK office and a revitalized IEEP UK office, IEEP will be in a unique position to contribute strong European research and innovative ideas to the UK and from the UK indeed to the whole of Europe. I hope our strengthened capacity in the UK will also help to align UK policies with EU standards and legislation, in this way contributing to a Greener Europe. It goes without saying that the two IEEP offices will cooperate closely and support each other’s projects and initiatives to maximize our policy impact.”
As part of the decision to enhance the focus on UK policy, Malini Mehra has been appointed Chair of the IEEP UK Board while Hans Wolters, who previously chaired both Boards, remains Chair of IEEP Board.