Kerryn Brent

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Kerryn Brent

Adjunct Lecturer
Faculty of Law

Sandy Bay Campus

n/a (phone)


Kerryn Brent is an Adjunct Lecturer in the Faculty of Law at the University of Tasmania in Hobart, Australia. Kerryn researches in the field of international environmental law, specialising in the governance of solar radiation management and carbon dioxide removal technologies.

Before joining the University of Tasmania, Kerryn was a sessional academic at the University of Newcastle, Australia, and practiced as a solicitor on the Central Coast of NSW. She was admitted as a solicitor to the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 2011.

Career summary


Degree Title of Thesis University Country Country Awarded
Doctor of Philosophy (Law) The Role of the No-Harm Rule in Governing Solar Radiation Management Geoengineering University of Tasmania Australia 2017
Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice   College of Law Australia 2011
Bachelor of Laws Honours Class I   University of Newcastle Australia 2010
Bachelor of Arts   University of Newcastle Australia 2009


Professional practice

  • Deputy Director and Co-Founder, Australia Forum for Climate Intervention Governance, Faculty of Law, UTAS
  • Steering Committee Member, Climate Engineering Conference 2020 Berlin, Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Germany
  • Member, Australia and New Zealand Society of International Law
  • Member, Centre for Marine Socioecology, UTAS

Administrative expertise

Kerryn coordinated the International Student Support Program in the Faculty of Law.

View more on Dr Kerryn Brent in WARP


  • International law
  • International environmental law
  • Environmental law and governance
  • Oceans governance
  • Geoengineering governance

Research Themes

Kerryn’s primary research interest is to understand how legal systems can facilitate effective responses to climate change. Her research aligns with the University’s research theme of Environment, Resources and Sustainability. To date, her research has focused on climate intervention (CI) governance. CI refers to proposals to reduce global temperatures by drawing carbon dioxide directly from the atmosphere or by reflecting a percentage of sunlight away from the Earth. Leading scientists and international organisations indicate that CI will be essential to keep global mean temperatures with the range of 1.5-2oC necessary to avoid catastrophic climate change impacts. However, CI proposals present significant environmental, geopolitical and social risks that require comprehensive governance at international and domestic levels. Kerryn’s research considers how legal systems can promote responsible CI research and implementation.

In 2017, Kerryn was awarded her doctorate on the topic of customary international law and the governance of stratospheric aerosol SRM proposals. Since then, her research has also focused on the governance of marine SRM and CDR technologies.

Fields of Research

  • Environmental law (480203)
  • Climate change processes (370201)
  • Chemical oceanography (370802)
  • Australian government and politics (440801)
  • Public law (480799)
  • Environmental politics (440805)
  • Research, science and technology policy (440710)
  • Law and society and socio-legal research (480405)
  • Environment policy (440704)

Research Objectives

  • Understanding climate change (190599)
  • Climate change mitigation strategies (190301)
  • Climate change adaptation measures (excl. ecosystem) (190101)
  • Environmental policy, legislation and standards (190299)
  • Measurement and assessment of marine water quality and condition (180505)
  • Community services (230199)
  • Justice and the law (230499)
  • Expanding knowledge in law and legal studies (280117)
  • Hydrogen production from renewable energy (170704)


Total publications


Journal Article

(10 outputs)
2019McDonald J, McGee J, Brent K, Burns W, 'Governing geoengineering research for the Great Barrier Reef', Climate Policy, 19, (7) pp. 801-811. ISSN 1469-3062 (2019) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1080/14693062.2019.1592742 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 11Web of Science - 15

Co-authors: McDonald J; McGee J


2018Brent K, McDonald J, McGee J, Gogarty B, 'Carbon dioxide removal geoengineering', Australian Law Journal, 92, (10) pp. 830-838. ISSN 0004-9611 (2018) [Refereed Article]

[eCite] [Details]

Citations: Web of Science - 2

Co-authors: McDonald J; McGee J; Gogarty B


2018Brent KA, McGee JS, McDonald J, Rohling EJ, 'International law poses problems for negative emissions research', Nature Climate Change, 8, (6) pp. 451-453. ISSN 1758-678X (2018) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1038/s41558-018-0181-2 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 4Web of Science - 4

Co-authors: McGee JS; McDonald J


2018Gogarty B, McGee J, Brent K, McDonald J, Haward M, et al., 'Glacier geoengineering needs lawyers too', Nature, 560 Article 167. ISSN 0028-0836 (2018) [Letter or Note in Journal]

DOI: 10.1038/d41586-018-05877-5 [eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Gogarty B; McGee J; McDonald J; Haward M; King MA


2017Brent KA, 'The certain activities case: what implications for the no-harm rule?', Asia Pacific Journal of Environmental Law, 20 pp. 28-56. ISSN 1385-2140 (2017) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.4337/apjel.2017.01.02 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 2Web of Science - 3


2017McGee JS, Brent KA, Burns W, 'Geoengineering the oceans: an emerging frontier in international climate change governance', Australian Journal of Maritime and Ocean Affairs pp. 1-14. ISSN 1836-6503 (2017) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1080/18366503.2017.1400899 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 4

Co-authors: McGee JS


2015Brent K, McGee J, McDonald J, 'The governance of geoengineering: an emerging challenge for international and domestic legal systems?', Journal of Law, Information and Science, 24, (1) pp. EAP 1-33. ISSN 0729-1485 (2015) [Refereed Article]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: McGee J; McDonald J


2015Brent KA, McGee J, Maguire A, 'Does the 'No-Harm'Rule' Have a Role in Preventing Transboundary Harm and Harm to the Global Atmospheric Commons from Geoengineering?', Climate Law, 5, (1) pp. 35-63. ISSN 1878-6553 (2015) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1163/18786561-00501007 [eCite] [Details]

Citations: Scopus - 8

Co-authors: McGee J


2015Moore N, Benmazhar H, Brent K, Du H, Iese V, et al., 'Climate engineering: early reflections on a complex conversation', Climate Law, 5, (2-4) pp. 295-301. ISSN 1878-6561 (2015) [Refereed Article]

DOI: 10.1163/18786561-00504007 [eCite] [Details]


2012Brent KA, McGee J, 'The regulation of geoengineering: A gathering storm for international climate change policy?', Air Quality and Climate Change, 46, (4) pp. 22-27. ISSN 1836-5884 (2012) [Refereed Article]

[eCite] [Details]


Chapter in Book

(2 outputs)
2018Brent K, 'Solar radiation management geoengineering and strict liability for ultrahazardous activities', Global Environmental Change and Innovation in International Law, Cambridge University Press, N Craik, CSG Jefferies, SL Seck, T Stephens (ed), United Kingdom, pp. 161-179. ISBN 9781108526081 (2018) [Research Book Chapter]

DOI: 10.1017/9781108526081.010 [eCite] [Details]


2017Brent K, McGee J, McDonald Jan, 'Negative emissions and geoengineering technologies: an emerging challenge for international and domestic legal systems', O Estado Regulador no Cenario Ambiental, Instituto Planeta Verde, AA de Carli, E Aydos, and PCS Avzaradel (ed), Sao Paulo, pp. 406-466. ISBN 978-85-63522-42-9 (2017) [Research Book Chapter]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: McGee J; McDonald Jan



(1 outputs)
2016Bowie AR, Jabour J, Trull TW, McLachlan K, Boyd PW, et al., 'Position analysis: ocean fertilisation' pp. 1-32. ISSN 1835-7911 (2016) [Substantial Review]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Bowie AR; Jabour J; Trull TW; Boyd PW; Press T; Lannuzel D; McGee J

Other Public Output

(5 outputs)
2019Brent K, Burns W, McGee J, 'Governance of Marine Geoengineering', Special Report, Centre for International Governance Innovation, Canada (2019) [Government or Industry Research]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Burns W; McGee J


2019Brent K, Gale F, Lovell H, McGee J, Peck P, 'Briefing Paper: Exploring Renewable Hydrogen for Tasmania', The University of Tasmania, Tasmania, December, pp. 1-5. (2019) [Report Other]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Gale F; Lovell H; McGee J

2019McGee JS, McDonald Jan, Brent K, 'Climate Intervention and National Security: The Australian Context', The Australian Forum for Climate Intervention Governance, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, 23 September 2019 (2019) [Report of Restricted Access]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: McGee JS; McDonald Jan

2018Brent K, Gogarty B, McDonald J, McGee J, 'Geoengineering the Great Barrier Reef needs strong rules', The Conversation, The Conversation Media Group, Australia, 1 August 2018 (2018) [Magazine Article]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Gogarty B; McDonald J; McGee J


2016Bowie AR, Jabour J, Trull TW, McLachlan K, Boyd PW, et al., 'Position Analysis: Ocean Fertilisation', The Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre, Hobart, Tasmania, ISSN: 1835-7911 (2016) [Government or Industry Research]

[eCite] [Details]

Co-authors: Bowie AR; Jabour J; Trull TW; Boyd PW; Press T; Lannuzel D; McGee JS

Grants & Funding

Funding Summary

Number of grants


Total funding



Negative Emissions: Survey and Outlook (2019)$80,000
This project will examine the feasibility, scalability, efficacy, costs, and possible risks of negative emissions technologies and their relevance for Australian climate policy.
Department of Environment and Energy (Cwth) ($80,000)
Administered By
Australian National University
Research Team
Rohling EJ; Ellwood Michael; Adams H; Clark M; McGee JS; Boyd PW; McDonald J; Brent KA; McCormack P
Geoengineering and national security: the need for good governance (2019)$9,488
This project aims to understand what the potential security implications of geoengineering are at an international and national level, and whether Australian domestic law frameworks are equipped to respond to these security implications.
University of Tasmania ($9,488)
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
Brent KA; McGee JS; McDonald J; Boyd PW
Developing International Governance of Marine-Based Geoengineering (2018)$26,118
This project will provide an innovative international legal analysis of the current and future prospects of marine geoengineering technologies, including recommendations for legal reform.
Centre for International Governance Innovation ($26,118)
Research Grant
Administered By
American University Washington
Research Team
Burns W; McGee JS; Brent KA
Regulating Plan B: Developing Legal Frameworks for Multiscale Governance of Geoengineering (2017)$7,793
This project scopes research designs for investigating what integrated, multiscale legal and/or governance regime for geoengineering technologies are required for Australia and how this governance regime will interact with transnational and international governance of geoengineering.
University of Tasmania ($7,793)
Grant-CAL Hothouse Research Enhancement Program
Administered By
University of Tasmania
Research Team
McGee JS; McDonald J; Gogarty B; Brent KA

Research Supervision




PhDCo-evolution and Re-alignment: Exploring autopoiesis and adaptive multiplexity in ocean and climate governance regimes2018
PhDWeather Modification in Australia and the United States: what lessons for governing regional climate intervention?2019