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Jeremy Wates

Secretary General
Jeremy Wates

Environmental Bureau, Europe’s largest federation of environmental organizations comprising over 170 member organizations from 36 European countries with a combined membership of some 30 million environmentally concerned citizens.

Prior to taking up his present post in May 2011, Jeremy served for more than a decade as Secretary to the Aarhus Convention with the Geneva-based United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.  The Aarhus Convention is the world’s most far-reaching international treaty on access to information, public participation in decision-making, and access to justice in environmental matters.

During the 1990s, Jeremy led the campaign by the European ECO Forum, an NGO coalition, to persuade governments to start work on a treaty on environmental democracy and then coordinated the input from civil society organizations into the official negotiations over the text of what was to become the Aarhus Convention.

In the 1980s, Jeremy founded the Irish environmental organization Earthwatch, the Irish member of Friends of the Earth International, and led the organization for more than a decade. 

Jeremy holds an MA Honours Degree in Philosophy and Social & Political Sciences from Cambridge University, UK. His permanent home is in West Cork in the south-west of Ireland. He holds dual British and Irish nationalities.

In 2011, Jeremy was awarded the David Brower Lifetime Achievement Award.