James Prest is an Australian environmental lawyer visiting RegNet whilst on sabbatical from the ANU College of Law. At RegNet he will continue his research and writing on climate change law and renewable energy law.
James has been a staff member at the Australian Centre for Environmental Law since 2006. He is a member of the Executive of the ANU Energy Change Institute, a cross-disciplinary network devoted to energy issues. He is also a Member of the IUCN Commission on Environmental Law. He has a professional background in private legal practice and public sector legal practice, and joined the ANU College of Law in 2006.
His research has a strong focus on comparative environmental law, with an emphasis on renewable energy and climate change law, examining the legal and policy barriers to increased investment in renewable electricity generation. His work applies a comparative law approach to critically analyse key policy choices and legislative models in the field of domestic energy and climate law, drawing upon Australian, EU, Indonesian, and Japanese experience in the last decade.
His current research is united by the following common themes: (1) barriers and drivers of renewable energy investment and comparative international analysis of renewable energy law; (2) questions of regulation of competition between firms in the electricity market and the influence of regulatory frameworks on the impact of disruptive technological innovations; and (3) a series of international and/or local industry based case study approaches. The latter include: renewable energy incentive laws; the influence of land use planning law on wind energy projects; regulation of mercury emissions from conventional generation; and legal frameworks to encourage emerging renewable energy technologies including storage and micro-grids, solar thermal power with storage, geothermal energy, and electric vehicles.
During his time at RegNet, James will be working with Peter Drahos, Jeroen van der Heijden and Peter Grabosky.
While the Australian government congratulates itself on ratifying the Paris Agreement on climate change, it is dragging its feet on a less well known, but very important, international treaty on air pollution.