As an environmental scientist Tara understands the impact of climate change and environmental degradation on people and their rights. Her focus is on solutions that are accessible to all. 

Science and Policy Adviser

Tara is a proven thought leader on climate justice and environmental issues in the context of international development.

Specialised in climate change science, science communications and policy with a PhD in EnvironmentalScience, she has 20 years’ experience influencing and informing international and national policy making to ensure equity, gender equality, inclusion and environmental protection. A seasoned scientific adviser past clients include the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice, the OECD, The Elders, SIDA (the Swedish government’s development agency), the World Bank, the Irish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Environmental Protection Agency, Ireland. Tara is a proven thought leader on climate justice and environmental issues in the context of international development.

Tara worked as a climate negotiator at the UN for 10 years and acted as a reviewer of the IPCC Special Report on 1.5oC. She was nominated to the role of Co-Facilitator of the Structured Expert Dialogue of the second review of progress under the UN Climate Convention from 2020-2023. Dr Shine is the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the International Institute for Environment and Development. She is a member of faculty and alumnae of Homeward Bound, the global leadership programme for women in science. She is a guest lecturer on several degree and masters’ courses in Irish Universities. 

You can view some of Tara’s publications here.

“As an adviser and thought leader Tara is committed to shaping lasting and transformative solutions on climate, sustainability and development that are fair and accessible to everyone.”

Jan Corfee-Morlot, PhD –  Adviser to the New Climate Economy and the OECD


Some of the world leaders and global organisations Tara has worked with on climate change and sustainable development.



In this instructive and inspiring book, Tara reveals the environmental significance of a wide range of commonplace objects, from mobile phones to televisions, from pens and paper to drinking straws and wet wipes. She suggests how to make achievable, affordable and genuinely effective changes that will improve your life and benefit our planet. 

Tara’s book reminds us we all have the power to make changes in our lives. The only way to achieve systemic change is through the actions of many. We can all make that change and bring about climate justice.

Mary Robinson
Chair of The Elders, former President of Ireland, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and UN Special Envoy on Climate Change

‘Dr. Tara Shine is an enlightened big-picture thinker, and with this book she shows that she is equally and delightfully adept at bringing details into focus. This book is all about realising the power you have as an individual by informing yourself, asking questions and making smart choices. By getting becoming active and joining the conversation, you become empowered and you do something about the problem we face rather than feeling powerless in its presence.’

Christiana Figueres,
Former Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

One of the most inspiring parts about #covid19 is that we’re seeing, very clearly, how individual actions can effect positive, global shifts. We can literally prevent a crisis from becoming a catastrophe through small acts of everyday leadership. So it’s poetic timing that our friend and Visibility team collaborator in Homeward Bound Projects, Dr Tara Shine is launching her terrific book this week, supporting us to live more sustainably in our everyday lives. If we can take responsibility for a pandemic, we can also take small steps to prevent climate meltdown. It’s possible. There’s hope.

Julia May
Co-founder and Director of and founding member of Homeward Bound

The work Tara is doing is helping people around the world create and realize a positive vision for the future based on respect for rights, sustainability, and equity. Tara’s keynote provided our attendees with invaluable insight and contributed significantly to dialogue shaping the critical green building movement and the role we all have in reimagining our world and raising the standard of living for all

Mahesh Ramanujam
CEO, U.S. Green Building Council

It’s been a pleasure working with Dr Tara Shine on our MadeAtUni Climate Action campaign.  She is passionate and knowledgeable about ways of making the world a better place, and a great communicator.  Her expertise, humour and warmth shone through when she chaired campaign co-creation sessions for us with senior leaders and students from universities across the UK.

Michael Thompson
Deputy Director of Communications & External Relations, Universities UK

We were delighted to welcome Tara to a panel event on climate solutions with Dr Jane Goodall. It was our headline event of our Festival, which would be viewed globally through our partnership with the British Council, so we needed a top level speaker.

Tara is a wonderful communicator who possesses the perfect balance of being authoritative and informative whilst also being warm and engaging. Tara’s input was incredibly thought provoking and was exactly what we were looking for.

I would highly recommend Tara as a speaker and presenter and we look forward to working with her again at future Festivals.

Chris McCreery
Director, NI Science Festival
Booksellers Association
Dubray Books

You can order Tara’s new book from any of the sites above, or from your favourite local bookstore.

In the How To Save Your Planet podcast, Dr Tara Shine takes you from room to room, object to object, suggesting how each one of us can play our part in reducing the impact we have on our planet – and improve our own lives in the process. Tara will run through some of the conundrums and confusion we all face in living more sustainably and point out the practical steps we can take to minimise our impact on the planet. There are seven episodes in the series based on rooms in your house, the office, garden and leisure time.  Each one is filled with facts and practical steps you can take from your own home
Listen on Apple Podcasts here.
Listen on Stitcher  here.

Listen on Spotify here.

Listen on SoundCloud here.
How To Save Your Planet From Home – Challenges
We didn’t imagine a world affected by COVID-19 when we planning to publish this book.  But all of the actions in the book are based on objects we have in our homes and gardens – so we can play our part in saving the planet while we are confined to home.
Inspired by the book, Tara and Madeleine designed 6 challenges based on everyday objects for all the family to take part in. The challenges are fun, educational and creative and you can watch them all on our YouTube Channel.  You can take part anytime just tag us @changebydegrees or use the hashtag #howtosaveyourplanet
Our challenges are also running in Spanish on instagram, and you can find them @editorial_blume

Public Speaker

Tara’s knowledge, passion and interest in climate change, the environment and development issues has taken her across the seven continents of the world in many different capacities. She advises world leaders, governments, multilateral agencies and civil society organisations globally.

Her understanding of the international climate change negotiations as well as the role that business and politics play in the complex geopolitics global decision making positions Tara as a sought after Public Speaker and Policy Adviser.

Tara holds a BSc in Environmental Science and a PhD in Geography from the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland. She has contributed to research, policy and teaching in countries across Africa, Asia and Europe.


ALTCOP was an ambitious business focused climate conference with a packed agenda of speakers ranging from founders/owners of businesses leading on climate change (eg Patagonia, Iceland, BrewDog) scientists and environmental media spokespeople. 

We needed a highly credible host with academic environmental credentials to provide multiple roles; introducing the conference, connecting each of the speakers and topics as well as adding an informed narrative of her own. 

Tara delivered on all of the above and exceeded our expectations. Tara is a highly engaging and thought provoking host. She has a unique ability to be both authoritative and compellingly empathetic at the same time. Tara also proved herself to be adept at working within the very challenging online conference medium.  I would highly recommend Tara to anyone looking for a host, speaker or presenter on environment, sustainability and climate change.

Tim Bourne
CEO - Exposure

Tara was fabulous.  Her performance was just perfect.  And the chemistry with our partner was spot on.  The first of all our speakers to hit all the right notes.  She made the topic so interesting and accessible.  She spoke as a scientist and as an individual that wants to make a difference. We have had so much positive feedback. 

International Professional Services Company

“As a born Explorer, I enjoy getting out into the wild to explore the environment first hand.”



Tara took part in an expedition to Antarctica in January 2019 as part of Homeward Bound, a global leadership programme for women in science.

Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound is a global leadership programme for women in science. The aim of each trip is to provide the participants with opportunities to build their leadership skills, share their knowledge and expertise, form international networks and research collaborations and increase the visibility of women sciences in academia and industry.

Tara was one of the 80 women selected from all over the world to take part in Homeward Bound in 2018/2019, and she used the opportunity to raise awareness of the need to promote and encourage women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in Ireland.

Tara has now joined the Faculty of Homeward Bound as Visibility Stream Leader and Online Facilitator and she will be the on-board Visibilty facilitator (science communicator) for the Fifth Homeward Bound expedition to Antartica (2021/22).

From the deserts of Mauritania to the rainforests of Borneo, Tara enjoys meeting people and hearing their stories and lived experiences. She is a qualified PADI Dive master with hundreds of dives completed in a underwater habitats around the world.

TV Presenter

Tara has presented TV programmes and documentaries for the BBC, RTE and Channel 4. She gave the prestigious Royal Institution Christmas Lecture on BBC 4 in December 2020, entitled Planet Earth: A User’s Guide. Tara presented A Wild Irish Year and Wild Cities for RTE and was a guest presenter on Future Island in 2020 and Will Ireland Survive 2050? In 2019, Tara was an expert presented on 2 episodes of Our Coast on BBC 2 in 2020 and took part in the BBC’s 2007 Expedition Borneo, as well as Brave New World with Stephen Hawking for Channel 4. Her discovery of Nile Crocodiles in West Africa was the subject of an acclamined BBC 2 Natrual World documentary, Lost Crocodiles of the Pharaohs.

To Book Tara, Please Visit Jo Sarsby

Social Entrepreneur

In 2018, Tara co-founded a social enterprise, Change by Degrees, which educates and inspires people to live more sustainability at home, at work and in their community. Tara and her co-founder, Madeleine Murray, are Social Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI) Awardees 2018; an accolade awarded for creating big ideas to solve Ireland’s social problems. Tara and Madeleine also co-founded Plastic Free Kinsale, a community initiative to reduce the use of single use plastics and Plastic Free 4 Schools, a programme for primary schools in Ireland.

“ Tara brings a wealth of professional experience and know-how to our work and marries it with a very real, heartfelt love of the environment and a desire to protect it. She sees opportunities and makes links where no one else does, helping people form a greater understanding of what it is to play our part in shaping a brighter, healthier and safer future.”


For more information, please visit the ChangeByDegrees website.

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