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Strong board appointed for Climate Change Authority

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THE HON GREG COMBET AM MP Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Minister for Industry and Innovation


GC 149/12 21 June 2012


The Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet, today announced the appointment of seven new members to the board of the Climate Change Authority.

The new members will bring expertise in economics, business, public policy and climate science to the Authority, an independent statutory body which will play an important role in the governance of the carbon price.

The Authority’s responsibilities include making recommendations on pollution caps to apply when the carbon price moves to a flexible price emissions trading scheme in 2015.

It will also review policies like the Renewable Energy Target and the Carbon Farming Initiative as well as Australia’s progress towards its targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Decisions on these issues remain the responsibility of the Government and the Parliament.

The Government has already announced the appointment of Mr Bernie Fraser as Chair of the Authority. Mr Fraser is a former Reserve Bank of Australia Governor and Treasury Secretary.

In addition, the Chief Scientist, Professor Ian Chubb AC, is an ex-officio member of the Authority.

“This is a very strong board,” Mr Combet said.

“There are four professors, several economists, a leading climate scientist, and people with strong practical backgrounds in business and investment.”

“They will bring a diverse set of skills, experience and qualifications to bear in the key areas required under the legislation establishing the Authority - science, economics, business, investment, finance and public administration.”

“These appointments will ensure that the Climate Change Authority thoroughly tests the evidence, material and advice before it.”

Details of the board members are attached.

Media contacts: Mark Davis, Gia Hayne 02 6277 7920

Climate Change Authority appointments

Lynne Williams

Dr Williams has worked as an economist in the public sector for over 30 years. She was Under Secretary for the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF) and prior to this appointment was Deputy Secretary, Economic and Financial Policy in DTF. Dr Williams is now working as an economic consultant, having left full-time employment in May 2011. She has held positions at the Productivity Commission, the Bureau of Labour Market Research and the Bureau of Immigration, Multicultural and Population Research. Dr Williams holds a Master of Arts from the University of Melbourne and a Master of Science (Econometrics and Mathematical Economics) from the London School of Economics. She completed a PhD at Monash University. She is a member of the Board of the University of Melbourne’s Faculty of Business and Economics, a Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration Australia, secretary of Athletics International (Australia), member of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government Research Committee, and a member of the Economic Society of Australia (Victorian Branch).

John Marlay

Mr Marlay is a non-executive director of Incitec Pivot Limited, Boral Limited, Alesco Corporation Limited and Cardno Limited. Mr Marlay is also the independent Chairman of Tomago Aluminium Company. Mr Marlay was Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Alumina Limited from December 2002 until his retirement from this position in 2008. Previously, he held senior executive positions and directorships with Esso Australia Limited, James Hardie Industries Limited, Pioneer International Group Holdings and Hanson plc. Mr Marlay has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Queensland and a Graduate Diploma from the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Professor David Karoly

Professor Karoly is Professor of Climate Science in the University of Melbourne’s School of Earth Sciences. His research expertise is in climate variability and climate change, including greenhouse climate change, stratospheric ozone depletion and interannual climate variations due to El Niño-Southern Oscillation. Professor Karoly was Chair of the Premier of Victoria's Climate Change Reference Group during 2008-09 and was invited to join the Australian Government's High Level Coordinating Group on Climate Change Science at the end of 2009. Since 2011 he has been a member of the Science Advisory Panel of the Australian Climate Commission, as well as the Joint Scientific Committee of the WMO/ICSU World Climate Research Programme. Professor Karoly is also a member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists and the Australian Academy of Sciences' National Committee on Earth System Science.

Heather Ridout

Ms Ridout is a board member of the Reserve Bank of Australia and recently retired Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group. She has been a member of several policy-setting and advisory groups including the Prime Minister's Manufacturing Taskforce, the Business Roundtable on Climate Change, the National Workplace Relations Consultative Committee, Infrastructure Australia Advisory Council, Skills Australia and the Prime Minister's Business Taskforce on Flood Recovery. Ms Ridout was also a member of the Henry Tax Review and chaired the Productivity and Prosperity Advisory Panel of the Population Strategy Task Force. Ms Ridout is also Director of the Australian Super Trustee Board and was formerly Director of Worldskills Australia. She holds an economics degree from the University of Sydney.

Professor Clive Hamilton

Professor Hamilton holds the Vice-Chancellor’s Chair and is Professor of Public Ethics at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, Charles Sturt University. For 14 years, he was the Executive Director of The Australia Institute, a progressive think tank. He holds an arts degree from the Australian National University (ANU) and an economics degree from the University of Sydney and completed his doctorate at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex. Before establishing The Australia Institute, Professor Hamilton taught in the Graduate Program in the Economics of Development at ANU then joined the Australian Public Service, first with the Bureau of Industry Economics and then at the Resource Assessment Commission. He also worked as a resource economist in Indonesia. Professor Hamilton has held visiting academic positions at Yale University, the University of Sydney, ANU, University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford. He is a member of the Royal Society’s Solar Radiation Management Governance Initiative.

Elana Rubin

Ms Rubin is the Chair of AustralianSuper, one of the largest industry superannuation funds in Australia, with over 1.8 million members, $42 billion in assets and over 160,000 employers. AustralianSuper is regarded as a leading superannuation fund by independent rating agencies. Ms Rubin is also a Director of Mirvac Group and TAL (previously Tower Australia Ltd), and a member of Infrastructure Australia Council, and Director of SecondBite, a not-for-profit organisation providing excess fresh food to homeless and other agencies. She recently retired as Chair of the Victorian WorkCover Authority and as a Director of the Transport Accident Commission (Victoria). Recent prior non-executive directorships included Director of Bravura Solutions Ltd, Industry Super Property Trust and Chair of Victorian Rail Track Corporation. Her previous executive role was Executive Director - Investments of the Australian Retirement Fund. Ms Rubin holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honors) and a Master of Arts from the University of Melbourne, as well as a Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance and Investment from the Securities Institute of Australia.

Professor John Quiggin

Professor Quiggin is Hinkley Visiting Professor at Johns Hopkins University and an Australian Research Council Federation fellow at the University of Queensland. He studied at the Australian National University, obtaining bachelor’s degrees in Arts and Economics and a master’s degree in Economics, and was awarded his PhD from the University of New England in 1988. He has held academic positions at the Australian National University, James Cook University, the University of Maryland, the University of Sydney and the University of Queensland and was a board member of the Queensland Competition Authority. Professor Quiggin is among the top 500 economists in the world according to IDEAS/Respect and is best known for his work on utility theory. Professor Quiggin has frequently been recognised for his research, including twice receiving Federation Fellowships from the Australian Research Council. His most recent book, Zombie Economics: How Dead Ideas Still Walk among Us, was published in October 2010 from Princeton University Press. Professor Quiggin is a Fellow of the Econometric Society and in 2011 received the Distinguished Fellow Award of the Economic Society of Australia.