Public forum: Australia, the global renewable energy pathfinder

Australia is leading the world in the annual per capita deployment of solar PV and wind capacity.

Join our special webinar to discuss the latest official figures on deployment, and learn what is needed to ensure Australian leadership in the energy transition can continue.

Our expert panel of speakers comprises:

Mark Williamson (Executive General Manager, Clean Energy Regulator) on the latest solar and wind deployment trends.

Prof Andrew Blakers (ANU): on Australia as the global renewable energy pathfinder in areas including deployment rates, greenhouse emissions trends, and South Australia's goals.

Dr Jenny Riesz (Principal, Operational Analysis and Engineering, Australian Energy Market Operator, AEMO): Technical integration of Distributed Energy Resources – An operational perspective.

Dr Alex Wonhas (Chief System Design and Engineering Officer, AEMO): Yes we can – Australia’s future energy pathways.
The 2020 Integrated System Plan and Renewable Energy Zones.

Assoc. Prof Matt Stocks (ANU): The long term: 50-100% renewable electricity & energy (transmission and storage; increasing electricity demand from EVs and heating; FNQ connection).

Moderator: Dr Liz Ratnam, ANU

Introduction by Prof Ken Baldwin, ECI Director

This is a public event and it will be recorded for ANU TV

We will welcome your questions via the Zoom Q&A.

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Andrew Blakers is Professor of Engineering at the Australian National University. He founded the solar PV research group at ANU. He works to improve silicon solar cells and in analysis of energy systems with 50-100% penetration by wind and photovoltaics with support from pumped hydro energy storage.

Elizabeth Ratnam earned the BEng (Hons I) degree in Electrical Engineering in 2006, and the PhD degree in Electrical Engineering in 2016, from the University of Newcastle, Australia. She subsequently held postdoctoral research positions with the Center for Energy Research at the University of California San Diego, and at the University of California Berkeley in the California Institute for Energy and Environment (CIEE). During 2001–2012 she held various positions at Ausgrid, a utility that operates one of the largest electricity distribution networks in Australia. Dr Ratnam currently holds a Future Engineering Research Leader (FERL) Fellowship from the Australian National University (ANU) and she joined the Research School of Electrical, Energy and Materials Engineering at ANU as a research fellow and lecturer in 2018. She also holds an ongoing affiliation with CIEE at UC Berkeley, and is a research leader in the Battery Storage and Grid Integration Group (BSGIP) at ANU. Her research interests are in developing new paradigms to control distribution networks with a strong focus on creating a resilient carbon neutral power grid.

Dr Jenny Riesz leads a team in Operations at the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) working on operational integration of distributed energy resources (DER). Prior to this, she conducted research at the University of New South Wales on high renewable power systems, and was a Principal in renewable energy and climate policy at ROAM Consulting. Her PhD is in physics.

Assoc Prof Matthew Stocks has more than 25 years research and development experience in renewable energy and photovoltaics. Since returning to ANU in 2013, he has been Chief Investigator on several ARENA-funded research projects, all examining aspects of renewable energy generation. These span from high efficiency solar cell concepts, including silicon based IBC solar cells and tandem solar cells comprising perovskites or GaAs with silicon as the lower bandgap device and through to studies supporting high penetration renewables including 100% renewable energy and sustainable transport.

Mark Williamson FEIANZ, GAICD, Executive General Manager, reports to the Chair/Chief Executive of the Clean Energy Regulator. In his eight years at the Regulator, Mark has successfully led many major change initiatives including the delivery of the Carbon Pricing Mechanism and Australia meeting its Renewable Energy Target. Mark had extensive senior executive experience in the private sector and state and local government prior to joining the Commonwealth in 2012. He previously held a national senior executive commercial/technical position in an ASX 200 company; and was Executive Director of the Queensland Environmental Protection Agency, leading that agency's regulatory operations across a diverse range of environmental legislation. Mr Williamson has qualifications in applied science and postgraduate qualifications in management.

Dr Alex Wonhas is responsible for overseeing AEMO’s expanded focus on system design, development and engineering, which includes planning and forecasting. Alex started at AEMO in January 2019. With more than 15 years’ experience in the energy sector, Alex was previously the Managing Director – Energy, Resources and Manufacturing at international engineering and advisory firm Aurecon, focusing on growing its energy and resources advisory services to supplement its traditional engineering business. Prior to working at Aurecon, Alex was the executive director responsible for CSIRO’s research and development in environment, energy and resources.