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9 - 12 November 2020 - Online conference

Speakers and session chairs for this event:

Monday 9 November

Unlocking energy productivity with decarbonisation commitments

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Monica Richter

Senior Manager, Low Carbon Futures Program, WWF-Australia and Project Director, Business Renewables Centre - Australia

Monica Richter is an economist and social ecologist with extensive experience in environmental sustainability with an interest in the role of business in accelerating the uptake of low and zero carbon solutions.  

Recent career highlights include establishing the Business Renewables Centre – Australia with other partners, deep engagement in WWF’s PandaLabs innovation program, and running the Science Based Targets Initiative in Australia, getting companies to set ambitious long term greenhouse gas emission reduction targets aligned with a 2oc/1.5oC pathway, in partnership with Global Compact Network Australia. Monica recently collaborated with the NSW state government and Lendlease to launch reports on the need to tackle embodied carbon in the building and construction industry, and is establishing a leaders’ group to drive this program further. 

Monica is a thought leader and has been invited to participate in many forums and conferences as both a speaker and a chair.  Monica is a graduate of the Future Directors program, an Executive Member of the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council, Chair of the Mercury Centre collaborative enterprise catalyst, and board member of Pingala community power, and on the Women in Renewables list published by the Clean Energy Council.

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Jonathan Jutsen

Chief Executive Officer, RACE for 2030 CRC

Jon is the CEO of the RACE for 2030 CRC, a new Cooperative Research Centre addressing the energy and carbon transition, focusing on energy end users. RACE for 2030 will invest $350M total resources over 10 years from energy users and industry associations, to energy retailers, distributors, technology companies, governments, researchers and other key stakeholders.

Jon has been a leader in energy and carbon management for over 40 years. He was co-founder and led the Australian Alliance for Energy Productivity for nearly 10 years as Chair and CEO. He founded and led Energetics for over 20 years plus 10 years focused on innovation, including establishing an energy tech start-up with VC funding which he took to the US and ran for four years. He also had a stint on the Board of ARENA (Australian Renewable Energy Agency). He is a Chemical Engineer with a Masters degree in Energy Technology. He was named one of the ‘100 Most Influential Engineers in Australia’, is a Fellow of the Academy of Technological Science and Engineering, received a Millennium Medal, and 2018 Energy Efficiency Champion. 

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Erwin Jackson

Director, Policy – Investor Group on Climate Change

Erwin Jackson’s 30 years of experience in climate change policy has earned him a reputation as one of Australia’s leading climate policy analysts and advocates. Erwin is a regular commentator in the national media and has advised government and business on effective climate policy in national, regional and international fora.

Erwin has sat on research advisory committees and undertaken strategy development in low-emissions technology for the University of Melbourne, ANU, CSIRO and the University of Queensland. He was Deputy CEO of The Climate Institute for nearly 10 years, where he was seconded to the Climate Change Authority as an expert in international climate change diplomacy. Other roles include being a senior policy advisor to the Australian Conservation Foundation and Environment Victoria.

Erwin currently sits on AGL’s CEO stakeholder advisory council and is a director of Climate Analytics Australia.

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Stuart Palmer (BA, LLB, MLitt, PhD)

Head of Ethics Research – Australian Ethical Investment

Australian Ethical Investment is a leading ethical investment manager, growing rapidly as people increasingly look for investments that provide both competitive returns and positive change for society and the environment. Stuart evaluates the impacts which companies' products, services and operations have on people, animals and the environment. He also contributes to Australian Ethical's advocacy for more sustainable business and investment models and practices. Stuart has also worked with the Ethics Centre and as a banker and lawyer.

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Jason Nielsen

Director of Strategic Projects – Climate-KIC Australia

As Director of Strategic Projects, Jason develops and leads multi-stakeholder system transition initiatives, leveraging his experience in Europe over the past decade working with large scale demonstrations and innovation ecosystem building initiatives for industry and cities.

Tuesday 10 November

Using energy productivity to decarbonise and grow your business

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Dr Mary Stewart

Chief Executive Officer – Energetics

Recognised globally as an expert in decision-making for sustainable development, Mary has nearly 20 years’ experience in assisting some of Australia’s largest energy users develop energy management and climate risk strategies. She is an international expert on life cycle assessment as it applies to resources and in the development of carbon footprints and carbon neutral positions.

Mary is the BINGO (business, industry, NGO) observer on the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Technology Executive Committee’s Implementation taskforce. She was invited to take up this position by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). The taskforce supports technology needs assessment, collaborative technology development and transfer, and uptake of existing clean mitigation and adaptation technologies. She previously represented the ICC on the Adaptation working group and the Standing Committee on Finance. Mary has attended and worked with the negotiators for two UNFCCC conferences of the parties (COPs) and attended COP25 in December 2019.

In 2017, Mary won the Women’s Agenda Leadership Award for 'Emerging Leader in the Private Sector'. She is on the Board of the Energy Efficiency Council (EEC) where she chairs the strategy committee and was recently appointed to the International Energy Board of the Institute of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). Mary has served on the Community Advisory Board for FlexCareers and supports her local community by sitting on the Environment Advisory Committee for Inner West Council.

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Nikki Dahlgren

Strategy Director, The Lab Insight and Strategy

Nikki has over 20 years’ experience in consumer research, cultural insights and strategy. She speaks to thousands of Australians  each year across a wide range of industries and topics. Each year The Lab produce The Australia Project, a syndicated study tracking the mind and mood of Australians over time, identifying  the cultural tensions rising and falling in importance in our society.


Nikki and The Lab help businesses make brilliant leaps forward through deep insight into culture and where it’s heading.  She combines this with a specialism in applying insights from the behavioural sciences to better understand and change behaviour. Working with clients in the public and private sector Nikki aims to help clients  create and sustain new positive behaviours. Her expertise includes helping businesses transition to operating models that include sustainability and meaningful social causes.

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Justin Merrell 

Group Environment Director, Lion

Justin is the Group Environment Director at Lion, one of Australia’s largest brewers. He is responsible for setting Lion’s environment strategy that focuses on carbon, sustainable packaging, and water stewardship. Prior to Lion, Justin held various roles in Qantas, but joined Qantas in 2012 as Group Environment Manager just in time to catch Australia’s first biofuel flight. Prior to Qantas, he was Operations Manager at the Koppers chemical plant in Kurnell for 11 years which was the start of a stronger focus on environmental issues. Justin has a Chemical Engineering Degree from the University of Newcastle and Master of Environmental Management from the University of New South Wales.

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Carl Duncan

Group Manager, Resource Efficiency & Sustainability – Teys Australia

Carl Duncan is Group Manager Resource Efficiency & Sustainability at Teys Australia, where his key responsibilities include providing strategic advice on energy, water and GHG emissions; seeking opportunities to improve resource efficiency, and leadership and capacity building around resource management. An energy engineer by trade, Carl's core objective is to support Australian business become more profitable while improving environmental performance. Carl is also on the Board of Directors for Beam Energy Labs, the software platform that’s helping drive the solar revolution.

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Paul Matuschka

Sustainability Lead – Mars Petcare (Wodonga)

Paul Matuschka studied science and mathematics at UNSW and has worked for Mars Petcare at Wodonga for 25 years. His experience and background includes quality and food safety management, process optimisation, environmental management, project management, manufacturing reporting and workflow management infrastructure systems. More recently Paul has been leading sustainability management for the Wodonga site and taking an active role in the driving Health and Wellbeing at the site and how Mars supports the community.

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Amy Kean

Director – Stride Renewables

Amy is an energy executive with 20 years in the public and private sectors, nationally and internationally. Amy has a background in Science, Arts and Law. Prior to joining Stride, Amy was appointed as the NSW Government’s Renewable Energy Advocate to implement the NSW Renewable Energy Action Plan. Following this, Amy managed the $75 million Emerging Energy Program, the NSW Transmission Infrastructure Strategy, the pumped hydro roadmap and supported the NSW Electricity Strategy. Amy was also responsible for the Empowering Homes, Regional Community Energy, Solar for Low Income Households, Smart Batteries for Government Buildings and Clean Energy Programs.

Previously, Amy established the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP) in South East Asia-Pacific. REEEP develops innovative, efficient financing mechanisms to strengthen markets for clean energy services in low- and middle-income countries.

Amy has also worked at Pinpoint Mastercard, Accenture, Hydro Tasmania and the Clean Energy Council and was a board member of Renewables SA, Renew and REEEP. She is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Energy. In 2017, she received the NSW Green Globe award for Public Sector Leadership and the Energy Minister’s Leadership Award in 2018. In 2019, Amy received a Recognition Award for services to the Duke of Edinburgh Award from HRH Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.


Wednesday 11 November

Shovel-ready solutions for quick wins
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Alan Pears

Senior Industry Fellow – RMIT University

Alan Pears AM has worked with A2EP over the past four years on a number of leading edge projects. He was lead author for our 2017 ‘Next Wave – Innovation’ report that created the framework for our more focused projects on transforming manufacturing, application of heat pumps in industry, use of real-time cloud-based data to cut food and energy waste in the refrigerated cold chain, alternatives to compressed air systems, and more. Alan has worked on energy productivity and climate issues with governments, communities, education and business across all sectors over the past four decades. He is a Senior Industry Fellow at RMIT University and a Fellow at the University of Melbourne’s Climate and Energy College.

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Warwick Rampley

Managing Director – Compressed Air Alliance

Warwick Rampley has spent the last 10 years refining and developing what is now considered to be some of the industry’s best practices for compressed air systems particularly around leakage detection and repair, demand reduction and system efficiency. When he entered the compressed air industry, it became apparent that compressed air is not treated as a limited resource, the systems are not run efficiently, every system leaks (in some cases more than what is used for production) and that while compressors get maintained (mostly), the system as a whole never receives any maintenance.


The Compressed Air Alliance was born from his personal desire to eliminate all the energy waste that comes from using and abusing compressed air. In the past year alone the Alliance has helped to shut down more than 1,500kW of compressors, saving industry more than $1.5M in energy costs, maintenance and capital equipment purchases.

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Murray Nottle

Mechanical and Process Engineer - The Carnot Group

Murray is an experienced and creative mechanical engineer working with mainly industrial customers. He is one of Australia’s leading experts on auditing, troubleshooting and upgrading compressed air systems and compressed air using equipment. Now at The Carnot Group, Murray has previously worked for air compressor and pneumatics companies. He also has experience with industrial gas fired processes and a lifelong interest in energy efficiency. 

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Jane Butler

Manager, New Business, Decentralised Energy Resources - AGL

Jane leads the New Business team within AGL’s Decentralised Energy Resources (DER) group who are building AGL’s multi-asset Virtual Power Plant (VPP). She has a master’s in sustainable energy engineering and over 15 years’ experience in decentralised energy, demand response, industrial energy efficiency and manufacturing.

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Nathaniel Galindo

General Manager, Energy Management - Flow Power

Nathaniel is the General Manager of Energy Management at Flow Power responsible for the delivery of engineering services supporting our customers manage their energy and implement the latest tools and strategies to actively reduce their cost. The Engineering team advise on holistic portfolio energy strategies, implement demand response and flexibility plans from being on the energy wholesale market and implement energy technologies such as batteries, renewables, generators and management systems. The team is very passionate about energy and strongly believe we are making a positive impact on the environment, driving the evolution of the electricity grid and wholesale markets and ultimately having a big impact on our clients bottom line.

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Rob Murray-Leach

Head of Policy – Energy Efficiency Council

Rob Murray-Leach is the Head of Policy at the Energy Efficiency Council, Australia’s peak body for energy efficiency, energy management and demand response. Since its formation in 2009, the Council has been putting energy efficiency at the centre of Australia's energy policy. Rob has a background in behaviour and sustainability from Oxford and Adelaide, and has contributed to several award-winning books on these topics.

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Kylie Hargreaves

Chair – Australian Alliance for Energy Productivity

Director – Hargreaves International

Kylie is an experienced diplomat, policy maker, director and private consultant with a track record for solving difficult challenges. Many of her innovative programs have won public accolades ( G’day USA), public sector awards (Austrade’s Client Service Charter) and/or industry awards (Information Industry). As Australia's Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner (Austrade) in the UK, USA and Spain, Kylie has represented Australia on the international stage and worked with hundreds of small, medium and large companies to capitalise on new growth opportunities. Her experience spans consumer products, services (tourism, education and the arts), resources, energy and infrastructure.

Kylie is also a seasoned policy maker. As Deputy Secretary (Deputy CEO) for several portfolios in the NSW Government, including Resources and Energy, she oversaw the largest reform of NSW mining legislation in decades. As such she is accustomed to driving change in complex environments under intense public scrutiny.

A current board / committee member for Regional Development Australia – Sydney and the Australian Ocean Energy Group, a past Chair and Director on various Government Boards, a NSW Finalist in the 2017 Telstra Business Women’s Awards, and now a successful private consultant. Kylie brings a unique blend of Government, Policy, International and Commercial expertise to any board.

Thursday 12 November

Unlocking energy productivity with decarbonisation commitments
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Mick O'Flynn

Director, Sustainability Programs - Department of Planning Industry & Environment

Mick is the Director of Sustainability Programs in the environment group of the NSW Department of Planning Industry and Environment. In that role he is responsible for the development and delivery of several of the initiatives under the NSW Government’s Net Zero Plan.


He has 15 years senior management experience across various parts of the NSW Government environment portfolio. His previous experience includes conservation management, the water industry, environmental regulation, local government and working in engineering consultancy.

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Vivek Kotak

Project Lead – Sustainable Finance, Sustainability Victoria

Vivek has more than eight years of experience in the financial services industry, both in investment operations and project management roles. At Sustainability Victoria (SV), Vivek is leading the Unlocking Innovative Finance project which aims to identify the barriers faced by Small to Medium Enterprises and Not for Profits through extensive social research. Based on the findings, the project will aim to deliver pilot interventions to address barriers that are co-designed with the key stakeholders and third party private financiers. Before joining SV in 2018, Vivek took a career break from his previous role to complete a Masters of Environment at the University of Melbourne focusing on Business Sustainability, Environmental Economics and Policy. Vivek will highlight recent findings from SV’s Boosting Business Productivity energy audit program and also present a newly developed Energy Upgrades Tool as part of the project he leads.

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Darren Miller

Chief Executive Officer - Australian Renewable Energy Agency

Darren Miller has more than 25 years’ experience across a range of sectors including renewable energy, electricity retail, technology and finance. Since joining ARENA as CEO in 2018, he has introduced new investment priorities that include the integration of renewables into the electricity grid, accelerating the development of Australia’s hydrogen industry for domestic and export and supporting industry to reduce emissions.  Prior to joining ARENA Darren was the co-founder and CEO of Mojo Power, an innovative electricity retailer. He was previously the Director of Asset Finance at Sungevity Australia, and co-founder and CEO of Sumwise, a technology and services company.

Darren’s previous experience includes managing investments for Publishing and Broadcasting Limited and Consolidated Press Holdings as well as in corporate finance and advisory at Ernst & Young. Darren is a Chartered Accountant with a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from the University of New South Wales.

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Johann Louw

Regional VP Finance ANZSAIC – McCain Foods

With more than 15 years’ experience in manufacturing and agri-food industries, Johann Louw is the Regional Vice President Finance for McCain Foods ANZSAIC*. Johann joined McCain Foods as Financial Director, South Africa in 2015, transitioning into a regional position three years later, when he was also appointed on the Board of Directors of the registered companies across the various countries within the region.

His extensive experience across agriculture, manufacturing, supply chain and commodity procurement across a range of sectors including poultry, animal feed, vegetable oil processing and FMCG, has positioned Johann as a core member of project teams that have delivered several brown and greenfield projects throughout his career.

Most recently, Johann has furthered his involvement to complete an on-site solar renewable project at one of McCain Foods’ production facilities in Ballarat. Johann’s experience builds on his past positions across a number of sectors including finance, private equity, US audit assurance at Ernst & Young. Johann is a Chartered Accountant with a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from the University of South Africa.

* Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India and China

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Bianca Sylvester

Director – Clean Energy Finance Corporation

Bianca has more than 12 years of experience in climate change policy and clean energy markets. She is currently a Director at the Clean Energy Finance Corporation based in Sydney, Australia and is a Board Member of the Australian Alliance for Energy Productivity.

Ms Sylvester previously spent six years as an Energy and Climate Change Specialist at the World Bank based in Washington DC and was a trader in J.P. Morgan’s commodities sales and trading team, based in Singapore and Sydney. She is a co-author and editor of ‘Transforming Climate Finance and Green Investment with Blockchains’, editor of the World Bank’s State and Trends of the Carbon Market 2012, and has peer reviewed several journals relating to climate change and clean energy.

Ms Sylvester holds a Masters of Government from the Johns Hopkins University in Washington DC.

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