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Centre for Commercial Law Studies

Energy and Natural Resources Guest Lecture: Tom Whitehouse, Chairman, London Environmental Investment Forum (LEIF)

13 March 2015

Time: 12:30 - 1:30pm
Venue: Lecture Theatre, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary University of London, 67-69 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3JB

The Energy and Natural Resources Law Institute presents a guest lecture by Tom Whitehouse, Chairman, London Environmental Investment Forum (LEIF).


"Regulation as a Spur to Technology Innovation in Natural Resources" 

The talk will discuss several case studies: 

  1. Water: The Milwaukee cryptosporidium outbreak in 1993 rewrote the rules for drinking water treatment in the US, and created the opportunity for innovative ultrafiltration membranes to breakthrough into the mainstream.  
  2. Energy: European 'feed-in' tariffs have dramatically increased the penetration of renewable power. 
  3. Waste: The European WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment) directive has spurred technology growth in remanufacturing and recommence (sister industries to recycling).  
  4. Agriculture: The EU's Plant Protection Products Regulation has made 74% of all commercial pesticides illegal and thereby boosted the bio-pesticide technology sector significantly.

Tom will also analyse areas where regulation is likely to create opportunities in the near future (i.e. over the next two to four years). New water laws in China and India are prompting some interesting, if so far inconclusive, technology developments. Further, he will assess the problems caused to regulators (particularly in the US) by technologies so compelling that they are prompting regulatory change, for example, new drone technology.


Tom Whitehouse is founder and chairman of the London Environmental Investment Forum (LEIF), an advisory business that convenes and connects capital, big business and new environmental technologies and technologists. He has worked across several industries and geographies; from British FTSE 250 hydrocarbon giants to European, North American, Israeli and Taiwanese public equity and venture capital investment companies and start-ups. Since being authorised by the UK's Financial Conduct Authority in 2008, LEIF has raised over $60m for early stage businesses and venture capital companies. Tom writes 'The Clean Deal', a monthly column in Global Corporate Venturing. Before working in the environmental technology sector, Tom was a foreign correspondent. From 1997-1999 he was Moscow correspondent for The Guardian and from 1991-1997 he was a reporter for the BBC World Service, based in Prague and Moscow.


For directions to the venue, please refer to the map.

How to Book

Please note that this event is open to Queen Mary School of Law postgraduate students only.

This event is free for CCLS/QMUL students but prior registration is required via Eventbrite.


For more information, please contact the CCLS Events Team on

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