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Program

Our moment to drive national climate action 

Join us for conversations with leading voices to discuss the opportunities that a society and economy-wide approach to driving ambitious climate action offers. 

DAY 1: Tuesday 17 August | Ambition for a healthy, prosperous zero emissions Australia

DAY 2: Wednesday 18 August | Short-term actions and opportunities

DAY 3: Thursday 19 August | The road to Glasgow: Together, we can do this!

Three online sessions will run each day at 9:00 AM, 12:00 PM and 4:00 PM AEST/Sydney time. Details of each session are outlined below and in this downloadable program

Unconfined by a physical location, the Better Futures Forum will meet you wherever you are in a virtual space, providing us all with a moment to drive national climate action! The themed sessions will include lightning talks, interactive workshops, plenary sessions and entertainment across a number of virtual stages. Recordings of all sessions will be available to registrants until November 2021.

Download program Watch the video Register 

Note: program details below are subject to change. 


Day 1 | Tuesday 17 August | Ambition for a healthy, prosperous zero emissions Australia


9:00am - 9:10am


WELCOME

Dan Ilic
- Presenter, filmmaker and comedian

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
Pastor Ray Minniecon - Executive Member of Indigenous Peoples’ Organisation-Australia


9:10am - 9:45am


WELCOME ADDRESS - KEYNOTE: Australia's opportunity to transform the economy and society for the benefit of all

Ban Ki-MoonFormer Secretary-General of the United Nations and Deputy Chair of The Elders
The Hon. Matt Kean MP - NSW Minister for Energy and Environment
Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor - City of Adelaide 


9:45am - 11:00am


PLENARY - KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Working across sectors and with government to enhance climate ambition

Francis Wedin - Founder & CEO, Vulcan Energy Resources
Debby Blakey - CEO, HESTA Super Fund
Taylor Hawkins - Managing Director, Foundations for Tomorrow
Abigail Forsyth - Co-Founder & Managing Director, KeepCup, KeepCup
Deo Prasad
- Scientia Professor, Manager of the Sustainable Communities and Waste Hub at UNSW
John Lydon
- Senior Partner, McKinsey and Company
Kerrie Wilson - Pro Vice-Chancellor (Sustainability Strategy), Queensland University of Technology
Adam Morton - Climate and Environment Editor, Guardian Australia


12:00pm - 12:30pm

PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: Creating prosperous, climate resilient cities and regions
Mayor Karen Redman - Town of Gawler, South Australia
John Grimes - CEO, Smart Energy Council
Fiona Armstrong - Founder and Executive Director, Climate and Health Alliance
Tennant Reed - Principal Advisor - National Public Policy, AiGroup


12:30pm - 1:20pm


BREAKOUT SESSIONS:

  1. Local Governments demonstrating leadership
    • Darren O'Connell - Energy Management Coordinator, Shoalhaven City Council
    • Alexi Lynch - Business Manager, Ironbark Sustainability
    • Mayor Karen Redman - Town of Gawler, South Australia
    • Stephanie Ziersch - Principal, Stephanie Ziersch Consulting
    • Ben Leonello - Environment and Sustainability Officer, City of Mitcham
    • Michelle English - Associate Director, Sustainability, City of Adelaide
    • Victoria Hart - Sustainable Built Environment Unit Manager, City of Moreland
    • Nick Tobin - Managing Director, Networked Urban Solutions Pty Ltd on behalf of Gwydir Shire Council
    • Robert Morrison - Sustainability Advisor, Cultural and Community Services, Blue Mountains City Council
    • Rebecca Petit-Bramwell - Project Officer- Climate Emergency Response Plan, Queenscliffe Borough Council
    • Bec Nichols - Sustainable Environment Officer, City of Stonnington
    • Katie Biggs - Sustainability Planning Officer, Augusta Shire Council
    • Sam Green - Climate Emergency Coordinator, City of Yarra
    • Dorean Erhart Climate Risk & Preparedness Specialist, Linden Climate Advisory
    • Daniel Stronggrove - Sustainability Coordinator, Cairns Regional Council
  2. State governments driving renewable powered futures
    • Chloe Hicks - Director, Energy Infrastructure Zones, NSW DPIE
    • Georgie Skipper - Chief of Corporate & Government Affairs, Sun Cable
    • Lance McCallum MP - QLD Assistant Minister for Hydrogen Development
    • John Grimes - CEO, Smart Energy Council
  3. The path to a healthy and resilient Australia
    • Prof Kathryn Bowen - Deputy Director, Melbourne Climate Futures, IPCC Lead Author (Sixth Assessment Report)
    • Fiona Armstrong - Founder & Executive Director, Climate and Health Alliance
    • The Hon. Meaghan Scanlon - QLD Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Youth Affairs
    • Dr Omar Khorshid - President, Australian Medical Association
  4. Common approaches to reducing Scope 3 emissions
    • Tennant Reed - Climate, Energy and Environment Policy, AiGroup
    • Jorge Chapa - Head of Market Transformation, Green Building Council of Australia
    • Dr Susanne EttiEnvironmental Impact Specialist, Intrepid Travel
    • Nick Palousis - Managing Director, 2XE
    • Peter Shelley - Sustainability Manager (Energy & Carbon), Australia Post


1:20pm - 1:30pm


WRAP UP + ENTERTAINMENT WITH POP ARTIST GRETTA RAY

 

3:30pm - 4:00pm

 

NETWORKING (Optional)
Better Futures Australia - Ask us anything
Australian Parents for Climate Action - How do we activate people who are concerned but inactive on climate?

 

4:00pm - 4:30pm


PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: Creating zero emissions, healthy, prosperous futures
Dr John Hewson - Former Federal Opposition Leader

Dr Amanda Cahill
- CEO, The Next Economy
Natalie Isaacs - 
Founder & CEO, 1 Million Women
Portia Odell - Director, Cities Power Partnership


4:30pm - 5:20pm


BREAKOUT SESSIONS:

  1. Policy settings for a climate-resilient society and economy
    • Cassandra Goldie - CEO, Australian Council of Social Service
    • Dr John Hewson - Former Federal Opposition Leader
    • Innes Willox - Chief Executive, AiGroup
    • Warwick Ragg - General Manager Natural Resource Management, National Farmers Federation
    • Rebecca Mikula-Wright - CEO, Investor Group on Climate Change
  2. What does a climate-friendly economy look like?
    • Dr Amanda Cahill - CEO, The Next Economy
    • Jaine Morris - Founder, COREO
    • Kirsty Howey - Co-Director, Environment Centre NT
    • Emma-Kate Rose - Project Manager, Food Connect Foundation - The Next Economy
  3. Cities activity database and regional priorities 
    • Paris Hadfield - Research Fellow, Urban Innovation Connected Cities Lab
    • Alexi LynchBusiness Manager, Ironbark Sustainability
    • Portia Odell - Director, Cities Power Partnership
    • Matt Sullivan-Kilgour - Head of Data Analyticsm, Ironbark Sustainability
  4. Women transforming their livelihoods to be zero emissions
    • Natalie Isaacs - Founder & CEO, 1 Million Women
    • Caroline Pidcock - Director of Pidcock Architecture and Sustainability
    • Abigail Forsyth - Founder & CEO of KeepCup
    • Gemma Meier - Grong Grong farmer
    • Alana Marsh - Meriam woman (Torres Strait Islander) & Wayapa Practitioner

 

5:20pm - 5:30pm

 

CLOSING REMARKS
Bishop Philip Huggins - President, National Council of Churches

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Day 2 | Wednesday 18 August | Short-term actions and opportunities


9:00am - 9:10am


WELCOME

Dan Ilic - Presenter, filmmaker and comedian

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
Dr Virginia Marshall - Executive Member of the Indigenous Peoples' Organisation-Australia, Australian National University Climate Change Institute; Wiradjiri Nyemba Educator, Legal Academic and Practising Lawyer


9:10am - 9:30am


PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: Collaborative opportunities for driving credible climate action
Prof Kathryn Bowen -Deputy Director, Melbourne Climate Futures, IPCC Lead Author (Sixth Assessment Report)
Fredrik Andersen - Corporations & Supply Chains Lead, Carbon Disclosure Project
Petra Stock - Campaigner, Australian Conservation Foundation
Chelsea Hunnisett - Policy and Advocacy Adviser, The George Institute for Global Health

 

9:30am - 10:20am


BREAKOUT SESSIONS:

  1. A Better Transport Future: Local Governments and the Transport Revolution
    • Alexi LynchBusiness Manager, Ironbark Sustainability
    • Rob LawExecutive Officer, Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance
    • Petra Stock - Campaigner, Australian Conservation Foundation
    • Claire Painter - Head of Business Development, JET Charge
    • Alice Woodruff - Director, Active City
    • Helen Rowe - Transport Program Impact Manager, ClimateWorks Australia
  2. Justice in the community on a path to zero emissions 
    • Dr Amanda Cahill - CEO, The Next Economy
    • Mark Wakeham - Senior Advisor, Australian Council of Trade Unions
    • Prof Kathryn BowenDeputy Director, Melbourne Climate Futures, IPCC Lead Author (Sixth Assessment Report)
    • Kellie Caught - Senior Adviser - Climate and Energy, ACOSS
  3. Creating a zero emissions healthcare sector for Australia 
    • Dr Jason Wu - Associate Professor at The George Institute for Global Health, UNSW
    • Peter Thomas - Executive Director, Association of Medical Research Institutes
    • Janine Mohamed - CEO, Lowitja Institute
    • Sally Mangan - Director Sustainability, Ambulance Victoria
    • Josh Karliner - International Director of Program and Strategy, Health Care Without Harm
    • Eugenie Kayak - Spokesperson, Doctors for the Environment
  4. Partnering to achieve zero emissions supply chains  
    • Fredrik Andersen - Corporations & Supply Chains Lead, Carbon Disclosure Project
    • Ian McConnel - Director of Beef Sustainability, Tyson Foods
    • Monica Richter - Senior Manager Low Carbon Communities, WWF
    • Ryan Swenson - Head of Sustainable Development, Officeworks
    • Jarrah Bassal - Sustainability Manager, Transurban

 

12:00pm - 12:30pm 


PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: Sustainable jobs and industries in healthy communities
Roslyn Morgan - Environmental Health Officer, Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation
Emma Bacon - CEO, Sweltering Cities
Dr Amanda Cahill - CEO, The Next Economy
Mindy LeowHead of Community Building, B Lab Australia & New Zealand
Tom Quinn - Head of Policy and Research, Beyond Zero Emissions

 

12:30pm - 1:20pm


BREAKOUT SESSIONS: 

  1. Tourism and outdoors: stepping up ambition
    • Susanne Etti - Environmental Impact Specialist, Intrepid Travel
    • Mindy Leow - Head of Community Building, B Lab Australia & New Zealand
    • Dom Courtney - EO & President, Outdoor Council of Australia
    • Robert Quirk - Executive Director - Park Programs, National Parks & Wildlife, NSW
    • Patrick McCormack - (former) National Sustainably Lead, Scouts Australia
  2. Building the resilient, sustainable, and equitable cities of the future
    • Michael Li  - Senior Project Manager (Cities), ClimateWorks Australia
    • Emma Bacon - CEO, Sweltering Cities
    • Evelyne De Leeuw - Director - Healthy Urban Environments, UNSW Australia Research Centre for Primary Health Care & Equity
    • Rob McLeod - Sustainable Housing Advocate, RENEW
    • Anna Crabb - CEO, Australian Energy Foundation
  3. Healthcare workers as part of the climate solution
    • Roslyn Morgan - Environmental Health Officer, Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation
    • Dr Martin Nguyen - Founder & CEO, Medical Pantry
    • Dr Kate Charlesworth - Medical Specialist, Sydney North Health Network
    • Prof Alexandra Barratt - Lead Investigator on Wiser Healthcare, The University of Sydney
  4. From the Front Lines: Working with Impacted Communities on the Energy Transition
    • Julie Lyford - Chair, Groundswell Gloucester
    • Dr Amanda Cahill - CEO, The Next Economy
    • Wendy Farmer - President, Voices of the Valley - Latrobe Valley, Victoria
    • Warwick Jordan - Coordinator, Hunter Jobs Alliance
    • Jaclyn McCosker Climate & Energy Campaigner, Australian Conservation Foundation
  5. Better futures for heavy industries
    • Tom Quinn - Head of Policy and Research, Beyond Zero Emissions
    • Michael WheatlandBusiness Manager – Sustainable Processing, Calix Limited
    • Prof Petra Ashworth OAM - Director of the Andrew N. Liveris Academy for Innovation and Leadership, and Chair, Sustainable Energy Futures, University of Queensland
    • Francis Wedin - Founder & CEO, Vulcan Energy Resources

 

1:20pm - 1:30pm


WRAP UP + ENTERTAINMENT WITH SINGER-SONGWRITER NIDALA BARKER

 

3:30pm - 4:00pm

 

NETWORKING (optional)
Better Futures Australia - Ask us anything
Building & Infrastructure
 - Building Climate Resilient Cities
Corporate & Finance Leaders - Meet & Greet
Local Government


4:00pm - 4:30pm


PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: Achieving zero emissions together
Jane Hadjion - CEO, Contexis Australia
Katie Hammer - Senior Project Manager, ClimateWorks Australia
Holly CrockfordProject Lead, Foundations for Tomorrow
Peter Christoff - Senior Research Fellow, Melbourne Climate Futures

 

4:30pm - 5:20pm


BREAKOUT SESSIONS: 

  1. Managing complexity to deliver solutions
    • Jane Hadjion - CEO, Contexis Australia
    • Kim Ballestrin - Global Division Manager, Elabor8
    • Chris Foley - Head of Energy & Environment, Kmart
    • Mindy Leow - Head of Community Building, B Lab Australia & New Zealand
  2. Raising the natural capital agenda
    • Peter Holding - Third-generation wheat, canola and sheep farmer, Southeast NSW
    • Katie Hammer - Senior Project Manager, ClimateWorks Australia 
    • Jennifer West - Managing Director, Carbon West
    • Cathy WatersPrincipal Research Scientist and Leader - Climate Research, NSW Department of Primary Industries
  3. Justice in the Courts on the pathway to zero emissions
    • Prof Jacqueline Peel - Director, Melbourne Climate Futures
    • David Barnden - Principal Solicitor, Equity Generation Lawyers
    • Tim Baxter - Senior Researcher, Climate Council
    • Adam Beeson - General Counsel, Australian Conservation Foundation
    • Sister Brigid Arthur - Brigidine Asylum Seekers Project
  4. Talk is cheap: Let's [just] transition
    • Holly CrockfordProject Lead, Foundations for Tomorrow
    • David Leitch - Principal, ITK Services Australia & Author, Renew Economy
    • Steven Hamilton - Assistant Professor Economics, George Washington University
    • Karen Cain - CEO, La Trobe Valley Authority

 

5:20pm - 5:30pm

 

CLOSING REMARKS
Dr Daud Batchelor - Co-Founder, Islamic Thought, Legacy and Renewal (ITL&R) Group 

 

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Day 3 |Thursday 19 August | The road to Glasgow: Together, we can do this!


9:00am - 9:10am


WELCOME 

Dan Ilic
- Presenter, filmmaker and comedian

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
Aimee Mehan - Regenerative CleanTech Entrepreneur & proud Gamilaroi-Irish Australian woman, University of Newcastle

 

9:10am - 9:40am

 

PLENARY - KEYNOTE ADDRESS & INTERVIEW: The road to Glasgow for the US and major allies
Jonathan Pershing - US Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Change
Adam Morton - Climate and Environment Editor, Guardian Australia


9:40am - 10:30am

 

PLENARY - KEYNOTE ADDRESS: How leaders across the economy and society are shaping the future now
John Davis - Director, South Pole
Mikako Suzuki - Corporate Officer, In charge of ESG and Risk Management, RICOH
Nguyen Thi Kim Hoa - Deputy Director, Microfinance and Community Development Institute (MACDI)

Mariana Panuncio-Feldman - Senior Director -International Climate Cooperation, WWF-US
Mario Ramón Silva RodríguezGeneral Director of the Metropolitan Planning Institute, Guadalajara Metropolitan Area, Mexico
Gonzalo Muñoz - High-level Champion of Chile, UNFCCC
Lisa Cliff - Program Manager, Better Futures Australia

 

12:00pm - 12:30pm 


PLENARY - BREAKOUT INTRODUCTION: A healthy, just and resilient zero emissions Australia
Prof Don Henry - Melbourne Enterprise Professor of Environmentalism, University of
Melbourne & International Board Member of The Climate Reality Project
Monica Richter - Senior Manager - Low Carbon Futures, WWF Australia and Project Director, Business Renewables Centre-Australia
Dr Cathy Oke - Melbourne Enterprise Senior Fellow in Informed Cities in the Connected Cities Lab, University of Melbourne
Dr Georgia Behrens - Board member, Doctors for the Environment

 

12:30pm - 1:20pm 


BREAKOUT SESSIONS: 

  1. Justice for people on the pathway to zero emissions 
    • Uili Lousi - President, OHAI Tonga
    • Kera Sherwood-O'Regan - Co-Founder & Impact Director, Activate Agency
    • Kathy Jetn̄il-Kijiner - Marshall Islander poet, performance artist, educator
    • Prof Don Henry - Melbourne Enterprise Professor of Environmentalism, University of
      Melbourne & International Board Member of The Climate Reality Project
    • Pastor Ray Minniecon - Executive Member, Indigenous Peoples’ Organisation-Australia
  2. Cities Race to Zero 
    • Dr Cathy Oke - Melbourne Enterprise Senior Fellow in Informed Cities in the Connected Cities Lab, University of Melbourne
    • Andy Deacon - Managing Director, Global Covenant of Mayors
    • Rohan Leppert - Councillor and Chair of Environment Portfolio, City of Melbourne
    • Mayor Susan Aitkin - City of Glasgow
    • Jess Scully - Deputy Mayor, City of Sydney
    • Trent McCarthy - Councillor, Darebin City Council
    • Darcy PimblettProgram Development Manager, Cities Power Partnership
    • Michelle English - Associate Director Park Lands - Policy & Sustainability, City of Adelaide
  3. Prioritising health in the national climate response 
    • Prof Tarun Weeramanthri - President, Public Health Association of Australia
    • Assoc. Prof. Ying Zhang - Co-Chair, The MJA-Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change for Australia
    • Dr Georgia Behrens - Board member, Doctors for the Environment
    • Dr Diarmid Campbell-Lendrum - Team Leader, Climate Change and Health, World Health Organisation
  4. Scaling finance to drive action 
    • Monica Richter - Senior Manager Low Carbon Communities, World Wildlife Fund
    • Mara Bun - Chair of Australian Impact Investments
    • Neil Salisbury - CEO & MD, Point Advisory
    • Sebastian Loewensteijn - Associate Director - Sustainability, CEFC
    • Patrick John Martin - Climate Finance Expert

 

1:20pm - 1:30pm


WRAP UP + PERFORMANCE FROM MUSICIAN BEN BARKER
 


3:30pm - 4:00pm

 

NETWORKING (optional)
Better Futures Australia - Ask us anything
The Climate Reality Project
- Australia, NZ & Pacific
Local Government
- Meet & Greet


4:00pm - 4:30pm

 

PLENARY - KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Australia on the Road to Glasgow
The Hon. Chris Bowen MP - Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Australian Government
The Hon Alok Sharma UK MP  - COP26 President Designate, 26th UN Climate Change Conference

 

4:30pm - 5:10pm


PLENARY: Identifying and responding to climate change priorities for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander peoples
Pastor Ray Minniecon - Executive Member, Indigenous Peoples' Organisation-Australia
Cathryn Eatock 
- Co-Chair, Indigenous Peoples' Organisation-Australia
Dr Janine Mohamed - CEO, Lowitja Institute
Dr Virginia Marshall 
- Executive Member, Indigenous Peoples' Organisation-Australia

 

5:10pm - 5:45pm


PLENARY - CLOSING REFLECTIONS: Australia's voice and where to from here?
Jahin Tanvir - 20-year-old policy adviser, author and multicultural youth advocate
Dr Rebecca Huntley - Author, Researcher and Independent Consultant
Kelly O'Shanassy - CEO, Australian Conservation Foundation
Joel McKerrow - Writer and Speaker

 

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