A leading environmental law and policy scholar from The Australian National University (ANU) College of Law has been appointed to a Royal Commission that will investigate the country’s devastating bushfires over the past spring and summer.
Professor Andrew Macintosh joins two other commissioners, former Federal Court Judge Annabelle Bennett AC, SC and former Australian Defence Force chief Mark Binskin AC, in heading the inquiry. The Royal Commission will assess the government’s response to the bushfires and how authorities can better prepare and equip Australians living in “hotter, drier and longer summers,” according to a statement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
The commissioners are due to deliver their findings to the Federal Government by the end of August.
Professor Macintosh is one of Australia’s pre-eminent experts on carbon offsets, land sector carbon abatement and federal environmental law. In addition to his appointment at ANU College of Law, he is a scholar at the ANU Energy Change Institute where he specialises in energy, regulation and governance research.
A regular adviser to governments, corporations and non-government organisations on environmental law and policy, much of his cross-disciplinary research has concentrated on climate change mitigation and adaptation, and Australian environmental impact assessment processes. He was previously the Chair of the Domestic Offsets Integrity Committee and an Associate Member of the Australian Climate Change Authority.
The 2019-20 bushfire season affected much of Australia, claiming the lives of more than 30 people and destroying thousands of homes.