Kirsty Hamilton OBE

Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Centre


Kirsty Hamilton is an associate fellow at Chatham House where she focuses on the intersect between policy and finance to drive sector-level climate solutions.

In 2004 Kirsty set up one of the first initiatives to bridge the gap between senior finance practitioners and policy counterparts focusing on ‘investment grade’ renewable energy policy. Papers accessible via the Chatham House Library include:


She went on to establish and head the policy work of the first-of-kind Low Carbon Finance Group (2010-2015) founded by lead energy financiers post-financial crisis, with a core focus on the UK’s electricity market reforms, illustrating factors that impact risk profile.

Her current focus is more fully integrating investment into decision-making to increase ‘investment confidence’ for both governments and investors –a key foundation for faster climate action.

She has 30 years of experience of international climate and energy policy, the 1990s as an NGO at the front end of climate debate and then working with the clean energy and finance sectors.

She has been an observer at the UNFCCC since the early 1990s and has held several invited international roles including REN21, World Economic Forum, UNEP Finance Initiative and she has been an expert reviewer and a contributing author to the IPCC.

In the lead-up to COP26 in Glasgow, November 2021, she has been seconded in to the COP26 Energy Transition team on investment-related themes via Bloomberg Philanthropies.

In her capacity doing advisory work, pre-COVID roles in 2019 included specialist advisor to a parliamentary Inquiry into financing energy infrastructure. senior policy advisor to an energy storage and renewables investor, and in 2020 co-lead on energy infrastructure investment as part of a UKERC research programme

Kirsty was awarded an OBE in 2021 for services to green energy, finance, and climate change.

Past experience

Invited Positions
2004 - present Associate Fellow, EEDP, Chatham House, Renewable Energy / Low Carbon Finance
2007 - present Steering Committee of REN21 - Renewable Energy Policy Network
2003-2010 Advisory Board, Climate Change Working Group, UNEP Finance Initiative
2009, 2010 World Economic Forum, Global Action Council on Sustainable Energy
2005–2007, 2008–2010, 2013 Expert Reviewer fourth and fifth Assessment Reports and contributing author to the Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
Work Experience
2002 - present Energy and climate policy consultant. Clients include Parliamentary Energy and Climate Change Committee (Investor Confidence Inquiry), IADB, financial companies, energy sector, UNEP Finance Initiative (written training for financial sector on UNFCCC, 2006-2013), JETRO, UK Energy Research Centre, UKERC.

Policy Head, Low Carbon Finance Group

1996-2000 Greenpeace International - coordinated the organisation’s climate-related corporate work internationally (insurance sector, fossil fuel sector); following work in the first half of the decade for Greenpeace in New Zealand (1990-1996) establishing the climate change and energy work on electricity sector reform