Terry Townshend is a Beijing-based expert on environmental law, with particular expertise on China. Before moving to Beijing in 2010, Terry worked for the UK Government at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Departments of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Energy and Climate Change (DECC), the latter for whom he led a team promoting action on climate change for the UK’s G8 Presidency in 2005. In 2007 he moved to Copenhagen, Denmark, where he became Policy Director for GLOBE International – an international NGO working with parliaments to advance environmental legislation – leading on climate change legislation work with more than 80 countries. He conceived the concept, and was lead author, of the acclaimed annual Climate Legislation Study, the latest edition of which examines climate-related legislation in 66 countries. He has presented the results of the study to politicians in the US Senate, the Mexican Congress, the Japanese Diet and the National People’s Congress of China. He is a prominent writer on climate change and has been published in national and international media including the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Independent, Global Times, Wall Street Journal and the New York Times.
A passionate birdwatcher and conservationist, he founded the popular “Birding Beijing” website, celebrating the birds that can be found in and around China’s vibrant capital city. Terry has spearheaded efforts to save some of China’s most endangered birds from extinction. In 2012 he became a Species Champion with BirdLife International.