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About the Commission

During 2010 and 2011, the Policy Studies Institute (PSI) and Green Alliance are jointly undertaking a project to extend and build upon the work of the original Green Fiscal Commission project. PSI and Green Alliance will undertake research into specific environmental taxes that could be implemented under the new, coalition government, and their likely implications on the economy, the environment and the people in this country.

The Policy Studies Institute (PSI) is one of the UK’s leading independent research institutes, which conducts applied research on the environment, work and social policy. PSI provided the secretariat of the original Green Fiscal Commission.

Green Alliance is an influential environmental think tank working to ensure UK political leaders deliver ambitious solutions to global environmental issues.

The people working on the Green Fiscal Commission’s extension during 2010-2011 include:

  • Paul Ekins, Professor of Energy and Environment Policy, University College London
  • Ben Shaw, Head of Environment Group, PSI
  • Chris Hewett, Associate, Green Alliance
  • Simon Dresner, Research Fellow, PSI
  • Roger Salmons, Research Fellow, PSI
  • Ben Watson, Research Fellow, PSI

The Commission is chaired by Robert Napier, Chairman of the Homes and Communities Agency and Board of the Met Office and former Chief Executive of WWF. Its Director is Professor Paul Ekins.


Esmee Fairbairn Foundation    Ashden Trust

The Green Fiscal Commission (2007-2010)

The Green Fiscal Commission was publicly launched in November 2007 with the press release of the results of an opinion poll on public attitudes to environmental taxation conducted by the British Market Research Bureau. This survey showed 72 per cent of the public support the establishment of such a body with an even higher proportion, 77 per cent, indicating support for the kind of tax shift that would be a central element of green fiscal reform.

The Commission published its Final Report in October 2009 and the last in a series of eight Briefing Papers giving further detail on the content of the Final Report was published in March 2010. With this phase of the Commission’s work complete the Commissioner’s stepped down in May 2010.

The Commission membership between 2007 and May 2010 included experts from business, leading academics, senior MPs from all three main UK political parties, three members of the House of Lords, and representatives from consumer and environmental organisations.

The original Commission was chaired by Robert Napier and its Director was Professor Paul Ekins.

Commission work programme
The three work streams of the Green Fiscal Commission between 2007 and May 2010 were:

  1. The generation of information/evidence on the operation and implementation of environmental taxes,
  2. The generation of information/evidence on public and stakeholder attitudes to environmental taxes,
  3. Targeted and appropriate communication of the Commission’s findings to a broad range of stakeholders and the public.

The outputs from this work were discussed and shaped at regular meetings of the Commission between 2007 and 2009.

The Secretariat of the original Green Fiscal Commission was provided by the Policy Studies Institute and consisted of:

  • Prof Paul Ekins, University College London (formerly PSI)
  • Ben Shaw, Head of Environment Group
  • Dr Simon Dresner, Research Fellow
  • Sarah Bell, Research Fellow
  • Ben Watson, Research Fellow