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Environment Agency appoints new chief executive

The Environment Agency (EA) has appointed a new chief following what it called a “competitive recruitment process”.

Sir James Bevan (pictured) will take up the position on 30 November, after leaving his current role as the UK’s High Commissioner to India.

He will replace Paul Leinster, who left his post on 25 September after 17 years with the agency.

David Rooke, the EA’s executive director for flood risk management, will act as chief executive until Bevan takes up the role.

EA chairman, Sir Philip Dilley said: “Bevan will lead the organisation with passion, energy and a clear commitment to continue the great work it does to protect and improve the environment and make it a better place for people and wildlife.”

Bevan, who has had a long career in government, said: “One of the biggest challenges of our time is protecting the environment and promoting growth. We need to do both, and I look forward to playing my part in that.

“The EA is a great organisation which makes a great contribution to our country. It will be an honour and a privilege to lead it.”

Steve Lee, chief executive of the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management:

“Sir James takes on this new role at a crucial time for our industry. We stand poised to be a vital part of delivering a more circular economy with all of the business, social and environmental gains that come with it. At the same time we struggle with tough market conditions and an under-current of waste crime. Sir James is clearly a very senior figure and will bring with him a wealth of knowledge and experience. CIWM and its members will be delighted to support him at the agency in the hope and expectation that he and his team can work with us and other regulators across the UK to deliver better waste and resources management”.

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