Environment Secretary George Eustice has selected Alan Lovell DL as the government’s preferred candidate to succeed Emma Howard Boyd as the chair of the Environment Agency.

Lovell’s selection followed a rigorous process conducted in accordance with the Ministerial Governance Code on Public Appointments.

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) Select Committee and the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) will now hold a joint pre-appointment hearing on Tuesday, July 5, and report on Lovell’s suitability for the post.

Pre-appointment scrutiny is an important part of the appointment process for some of the most significant public appointments made by ministers to verify that the recruitment meets the principles set out in the Governance Code on Public Appointments.

Pre-appointment hearings are held in public and allow a select committee to take evidence from a minister’s preferred candidate before they are appointed.

The EFRA and EAC Select Committees will publish a report setting out their views on the candidate’s suitability for the post, which will be considered by ministers before deciding whether to proceed with the appointment.

Subject to the EFRA and EAC Select Committees’ report and the final decision being made by the Environment Secretary, Lovell will take up the post in September 2022.

Emma Howard Boyd's second term as Environment Agency chair will end in September 2022.