Lord Carnwath has been a Justice of the UK Supreme Court since April 2012. He was a Lord Justice of Appeal since September 2001, having been a Judge of the High Court, Chancery Division, from 1994. He was Chairman of the Law Commission for England and Wales from February 1999 until July 2002. From 2004 to 2012, as Senior President of Tribunals, he led the reform of the UK Specialist Tribunal system.
Previously he practised as a barrister, mainly in planning, environmental, and administrative law, and also (between 1980 and 1985) as standing counsel on tax cases for the Inland Revenue. Between 1988 and 1994 he was Attorney-General to HRH the Prince of Wales (following which he was made a Companion of the Victorian Order).
He has taken a particular interest, nationally and internationally, in issues of environmental law. He is President of the UK Environmental Association, and a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Environmental Law. He was co-founder, and first Secretary, of the EU Forum of Judges. From 2002-4 he represented the UK judiciary on a UNEP working-group set up following the Johannesburg Global Judges’ Symposium, and co-chaired the judicial editorial board for the 2004 UNEP Judicial Handbook on Environmental Law.