Australia’s prospects for a credible energy and climate change policy? – Canberra

We have had the Finkel Review on NEM security, the NEG, the ACCC report on affordable electricity, AEMO’s Integrated System Plan and the industry’s Energy Charter. Are these able to solve the trilemma of affordable, reliable and low emissions electricity in the absence of an over-arching federal climate and energy policy?

At this Capital Ideas event, moderator, ANU Energy Change Institute Director Ken Baldwin and our panel, Grattan Institute’s Tony Wood, Warwick McKibbin from ANU and the BCA’s Jessica Wilson  discussed if there is any prospect of credible energy and climate change policy in Australia before the next election.


Professor Warwick J. McKibbin, AO has a Vice Chancellor’s Chair in Public Policy and is Director of the Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis (CAMA) in the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University (ANU). He is also an ANU Public Policy Fellow; a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences; a Distinguished Fellow of the Asia and Pacific Policy Society; a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C (where he is co-Director of the Climate and Energy Economics Project).  He was awarded the Order of Australia in 2016 “For Distinguished Service to Education as an Economist, Particularly in the Area of Global Climate Policy, and to Financial Institutions and International Organizations” and the Centenary medal in 2003 “For Service to Australian Society through Economic Policy and Tertiary Education”.

Jessica Wilson is Director Energy & Climate Change at the Business Council of Australia. She joined the Business Council in December 2017 and has responsibility for energy and climate change policy. Jess’ professional experience is in both government and the private sector. Before joining the Business Council, she was an adviser to the former Minister for the Environment and Energy, Josh Frydenberg. Prior to this Jess worked as a consultant at KPMG in the management consulting division. Jess holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from Monash University, and a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice from the Australian National University. She was admitted as an Australian Lawyer to the Supreme Court of Victoria in 2017.

Tony Wood has been Energy Program Director at Grattan since 2011 after 14 years working at Origin Energy in senior executive roles. From 2009 to 2014 he was also Program Director of Clean Energy Projects at the Clinton Foundation, advising governments in the Asia-Pacific region on effective deployment of large-scale, low-emission energy technologies. In 2008, he was seconded to provide an industry perspective to the first Garnaut climate change review.


Professor Ken Baldwin is Director of the Energy Change Institute at the ANU, and Deputy Director of the Research School of Physics and Engineering. Since 2011 he was a member of the Project Steering Committee for the Australian Energy Technology Assessment (AETA) produced by the former Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE).  He is a Board member of the South East Region of Renewable Energy Excellence (SERREE, from 2014).  In 2015 he was appointed to the Socio-Economic Modelling Advisory Committee of the South Australian Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission. Prof Baldwin chairs the Energy Cluster of the Australia-Indonesia Centre (from 2015). Professor Baldwin is an inaugural ANU Public Policy Fellow, and winner of the 2004 Australian Government Eureka Prize for Promoting Understanding of Science, for his role in initiating and championing “Science meets Parliament”.