Dr Alan KNIGHT OBE – Biography

Alan has over 30 years’ experience of working with global companies and governments on sustainability. Currently he works for Drax as their Group Director of Sustainability. In 2014, he joined ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steel company ArcelorMittal in 2014 as their General Manager for Corporate Responsibility and since then has helped develop a sustainability framework ranging from products to process. Alan created and chaired the Ebola Private Sector Mobilisation Group, which was a collaboration of over 100 companies sharing best practice and coordinating the corporate respond to Ebola in West Africa. For this he was made a Clinton Global Citizen honouree in 2015.

Previous to that he was Sustainability Director for Business and the Community (BITC) where he oversaw all their Corporate Sustainability Programmes. He advised the Virgin Group on sustainable development for seven years and led the Virgin Earth Challenge: Sir Richard Branson’s $25m prize for scalable, sustainable ways of removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. Previously he has worked with global companies as diverse as B&Q where led their entire CR and Sustainability programme for 10 years. He was instrument in founding and developing the Forest Stewardship Council. He held similar roles in the Parent company Kingfisher and SABMiller, the multibillion brewery company.

For nine years he was a commissioner with the Sustainable Development Commission where he introduced the concept of “choice editing” into the product policy debate. He also chaired the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Nature Partnership. He is a Senior Associate of the Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership.

He was awarded the OBE in June 1998, in 2005 the US-based Rainforest Alliance presented him with a lifelong award and in 2013 he was made an Honorary Fellow of the Society for the Environment.


Also see my not-for-profit and public policy work.