Chief Scientist Alan Finkel’s Review of the Security of the National Electricity Market – Sydney

Australia’s energy sector faces major challenges in the shift towards a low emissions future. In the wake of several electricity system disruptions, and particularly the South Australian state-wide blackout in 2016, Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel has chaired the Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market. The breadth of submissions to the Finkel Review, and the ongoing public debate, both mark the community’s determination to help shape the future of our electricity sector.

This Forward Thinking event followed the release of the Final Report of the Finkel Review.  Dr Finkel and a panel of experts discussed how Australia can respond to challenges that our electricity system faces. Dr Finkel outlined his blueprint for reform of the National Electricity Market, including recommended changes to policy, governance and market rules. This was followed by a discussion between our panel of experts and questions from the audience.


Fran Kelly is an Australian radio presenter, current affairs journalist and political correspondent who has hosted the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Radio National programme Breakfast since March 2005.


Dr Alan Finkel commenced as Australia’s Chief Scientist on 25 January 2016. He is Australia’s eighth Chief Scientist. Dr Finkel has an extensive science background as an entrepreneur, engineer, neuroscientist and educator. Prior to becoming Chief Scientist, he was the eighth Chancellor of Monash University and the eighth President of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE). Dr Finkel was awarded his PhD in electrical engineering from Monash University and worked as a postdoctoral research fellow in neuroscience at the Australian National University. In 1983 he founded Axon Instruments, a California-based, ASX-listed company that made precision scientific instruments. After Axon was sold in 2004, Dr Finkel became a director of the acquiring company. In 2006, he focused his career in Australia and undertook a wide range of activities including co-founding Cosmos Magazine. During his time at ATSE, he led the development and implementation of the STELR program for secondary school science.

Marianne Lourey is the Executive Director of ACIL Allen Consulting’s Sydney office. Marianne has more than 30 years of experience, predominantly in the energy sector, working in, and consulting to, government, regulators and industry. She has worked in a broad range of areas including energy and climate change policy, economic regulation, and technical engineering roles. Immediately prior to joining ACIL Allen in 2010, Marianne was the Executive Director responsible for providing advice to the Victorian Government on energy policy including the States and Territories’ National Emissions Trading Scheme, the original Victorian Renewable Energy Target scheme, the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target schemes, deregulating energy retail prices, the rollout of smart meters, feed-in tariffs, and the transfer of state-based economic regulation to the national framework.

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.