Cormac Cullinan


Cormac is a lawyer with strong creative, communication, writing, and leadership skills, and a reputation for innovation and “thinking outside the box”. He represents a diverse range of clients that include international organisations, governments, businesses (e.g. in the renewable energy, waste, manufacturing and hospitality sectors), cities, non-governmental organisations and local communities.

Cormac started his legal career in maritime and international commercial law with Shepstone and Wylie and Maitland and Co before specialising in environmental law and governance in 1994 when he established EnAct International in London. Today few lawyers can rival the depth and breadth of the environmental law and governance expertise which Cormac has acquired in working in more than 25 countries over three decades. This includes: designing the “architecture” of public and private sector governance systems that promote sustainability, drafting contracts and legal instruments (ranging from international treaties and declarations to national, provincial and municipal legislation) litigating, advising businesses and social entrepreneurs on greening their enterprises, and developing legal compliance systems.

He is also an internationally respected author, speaker and advocate for ecological sustainability and the rights of Nature. In 2008 he was included in a book profiling 301 extraordinary environmentalists in history and in 2012 he was won the Nick Steele award for the South African environmentalist of the year, and in 2018 the Enviropaedia life-time achievement award.

Cormac loves wild places and creatures and spends a lot of time thinking about how to build socially just and ecologically sustainable communities within industrialised civilisations. His work in pioneering a legal philosophy that restores an ecological perspective to governance systems (Earth jurisprudence) is internationally recognised. He has addressed the General Assembly of the United Nations and many other international conferences, and led the drafting of the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth.