Lord Hunt of Chesterton, CB FRS, Emeritus Professor, University College London; Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre, University of Cambridge.

Professor Hunt's current position is Visiting Fellow of the Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre in Cambridge University.  He is a Fellow of Trinity College Cambridge and an Honorary Professor in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge. He is also a J.M. Burgers visiting professor at the Delft University of Technology, Visiting Professor at Arizona State University, Pierre Fermat Visiting Professor in Toulouse (2007-2008), and Academic Director of the Lighthill Risk Network.  He is Emeritus Professor of Climate Modelling in the Department of Earth Sciences, and Honorary Professor of Mathematics at University College London. He was Director-General and Chief Executive of the Meteorological Office from 1992-1997.  He was created a Baron in the House of Lords (with the title Lord Hunt of Chesterton) in May 2000. He and his colleagues at Cambridge formed a company, Cambridge Environmental Research Consultants Ltd (CERC) in 1986 which developed environmental software and in collaboration with other organisations a new air pollution dispersion model which is now the standard model for the UK Environment Agency.  He has been Chairman since 2001. While at the Met Office he was elected to the Executive Committee of the World Meteorological Organisation.  He was active in negotiating new international arrangements for the exchange of data to ensure that National Meteorological Services world-wide can continue to collaborate with each other at the same time as encouraging the commercial applications of meteorology worldwide.  He lectured on behalf of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) at the UN World Conference on the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction in 1994 and on urban problems at Habitat II in Istanbul in 1996, and worked to improve international warnings for disasters ranging from tropical cyclones to volcanoes and to emphasise urban meteorology at WMO.  He actively promoted collaboration in Europe and was elected Chairman of the Informal Conference on West European Directors for 1994 -95. In the House of Lords, he sits on the Labour benches and has served on select committees on ‘Animal experiments for scientific procedures’ 2003, ‘Chips for everything’ 2004, ‘EU and Climate Change’ 2005 and ‘International Scientific Treaties’ 2004, and the joint pre-legislative scrutiny committee on the Marine Bill (2008).



Professor David Johnson, BSc MSc PhD FRGS

David Johnson is a Director of Seascape Consultants Ltd and Emeritus Professor of Coastal Management at the UK Southampton Solent University. He is a chartered geographer and chartered scientist and has held a Caird Fellowship at the UK National Maritime Museum. He was previously Executive Secretary to the OSPAR Commission (2006-2012) responsible for refocusing the work of the Commission including production of the Quality Status Report 2010 and establishing the world’s first and only network of Marine Protected Areas in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction. Seascape Consultants managed the EU FP7 MIDAS project (2013-2016), evaluating environmental impacts of deep-sea mining, and currently provides the Secretariat for the European Marine Observation and Data network (EMODnet). In 2016 David led an Article 154 Performance Review of the International Seabed Authority. Since 2013 he has coordinated the Global Ocean Biodiversity Initiative, supporting efforts by the Convention on Biological Diversity to describe 279 Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Areas worldwide, and is retained by the UNESCO World Heritage Marine Programme to help develop a Particularly Sensitive Sea Area proposal for Banc d’Arguin (Mauritania). He also currently leads the policy work package of the blue growth EU H2020 ATLAS project and is the North Sea focal point for the EU Maritime Spatial Planning Platform. He is a member of the GESAMP pool of experts and a Visiting Professor at the World Maritime University in Malmo Sweden.




Professor Peter Nolan, University of Cambridge.

Dr. Anil Seal, Director, Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre and Joint Director, Cambridge China Development Trust.

Timothy R. Turner, Senior Partner, Tethys Environmental Consulting.


Company Secretary

Dr Nicholas Branson, Treasurer, Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre.



Senior Adviser

Dr. Philomène Verlaan is an oceanographer (Ph.D., Imperial College London) and an attorney-at-law (J.D., Florida State University; Member of the Florida Bar). As a scientist, her research addresses the formation, biogeochemistry and ecology of deep-sea ferro-manganese nodules and crusts; she has participated in (so far) 22 oceanographic research cruises and nine research submersible dives, and is a Visiting Colleague at the Department of Oceanography, University of Hawai'i. As a law of the sea specialist, she focuses on marine mining and marine scientific research in supporting the environmentally and commercially responsible use of marine resources under the auspices of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, humankind's "Constitution for the Oceans", as so felicitously described by Ambassador Koh. She has worked on the interface between marine science and marine law to assist international intergovernmental organizations (e.g., United Nations Environment Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization, International Maritime Organization, International Seabed Authority, Office of the London Convention, Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission) and international non-governmental organizations (e.g., Law of the Sea Institute, Rockefeller Foundation, Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology, International Union for Conservation of Nature, Advisory Committee on Protection of the Sea), including participation in related multi-lateral treaty development and implementation. The author of over 50 refereed marine publications, she has made over 40 invited presentations on marine topics in international fora, is a member of international learned marine professional societies (International Marine Minerals Society, Marine Technology Society, Oceanography Society, Oceans Group of the World Commission on Environmental Law; she is a Fellow of the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology), a guest lecturer at the Rhodes Academy for Oceans Law and Policy, and serves as editorial associate for the journal Marine Georesources and Geotechnology and the International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law.


Senior Adviser

Dr Trevor Dixon has spent a lifetime engaged in marine environmental protection activities in a variety of roles, from advising on national and inter-governmental marine management policies to organising and carrying out pollution surveys under the auspices of ACOPS. He is also an adviser on marine management issues for the media including the BBC, CNN and Sunday Times. He has been equally active in helping business to address environmental performance and sustainability issues by establishing partnerships between environmental groups and employers’ organisations or trade associations. He has had over 100 papers published to date and his research has been recognised nationally and internationally by government departments and United Nations agencies.