ARENA Board

The ARENA Board is a skills-based, decision making board.

Under ARENA’s governance framework, the Secretary of the Department of the Environment is automatically a member of the Board and the Minister for the Environment is able to appoint up to six additional Board members. Appointed members of the Board must have skills in renewable energy technology, commercialisation, business investment or corporate governance. This ensures expert administration of ARENA’s funds.

ARENA’s Board sets the agency’s investment strategies and priorities, oversees the running of the organisation, and approves funding for projects up to $50 million. The Minister approves funding over $50 million. The ARENA CEO approves funding that is less than $500,000.

ARENA’s legislation says the Board has up to seven Directors, one of which is Secretary of the Department responsible for the agency. The Minister responsible for ARENA appoints the other Directors.

Board Directors

Martijn Wilder AM (Chair)

Start date: April 2016

Martijn Wilder AMMartijn is head of Baker and McKenzie’s Global Environmental Markets and Climate Change practice specialising in climate change law, international carbon and broader environmental markets, climate and conservation finance and conservation projects.  He is also Chair of the Baker & McKenzie Law for Development Initiative.

His other roles include Professor of Climate Change Law at the Australian National University and an Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation Research Department of Land Economy University of Cambridge. Martijn is Chair of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and a Director of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, WWF (Australia) and the Climate Council. He holds advisory roles as Chair of the NSW Climate Change Council, a Governing Board Member of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP) and as a member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists. He is also the Deputy Chair of the Private Sector Roundtable of the Asia Pacific Rainforest Recovery Plan.

Martijn recently Chaired the Independent Review Committee of the Victorian Climate Change Act. He was formerly Chairman of Low Carbon Australia and for many years chaired TRAFFIC (Oceania). He has written widely especially on climate change law, environmental law and Antarctica. In 2012, Martijn was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition for “service to environmental law, particularly in the area of climate change through contributions to the development of law, global regulation, public policy and the promotion of public debate, and to the community”.

Mr Wilder holds a Bachelor of Economics (Hons) from the University of Sydney, LLB Honours from the Australian National University, LLM from the University of Cambridge and has studied at the Hague Academy Centre for Studies and Research in International Law and International Relations. He is also a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Dr Gordon de Brouwer PSM

Start date: October 2015

Dr Gordon de Brouwer PSMDr Gordon de Brouwer PSM was appointed Secretary of the Department of the Environment in September 2013 and is responsible for the design and implementation of the Australian Government’s environment and heritage, climate, and cities and the built environment policies. He manages a department with around two thousand staff, with operations across Australia, including Antarctica.

Previously Dr de Brouwer was the Associate Secretary in the Domestic Policy Group at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and was also the senior official representing Australia’s interests in the G20.

Before joining PM&C in July 2008, Dr de Brouwer was Chief Advisor, Budget Policy Division at the Treasury. From February 2005 to November 2007, he was General Manager of the G20 and APEC Secretariat. Dr de Brouwer was chair of the APEC senior finance officials’ meetings in Australia’s host year and Australia’s G20 finance deputy in 2007. Dr de Brouwer was Principal Adviser (Macroeconomic) and General Manager (International Economic Division) from March 2004 until February 2005.

Dr de Brouwer was Professor of Economics in the Crawford School of Economics and Government at the Australian National University, from January 2000 to March 2004. This included a period as Executive Director of the Australia-Japan Research Centre and Director of the School’s Research Committee. Dr de Brouwer was also a member of the University’s research program on Japan’s Economy and Government and on Korea’s Economy and Government.

Dr de Brouwer has a doctorate in economics from the ANU and first-class honours bachelor and master degrees in economics from the University of Melbourne. He was awarded Monbusho and Japan Foundation scholarships for study in Japan in 1987-89 and 1994.

He received a Public Service Medal in 2011 for outstanding public service in the development of international economic policy, particularly in the formulation of the Australian Government’s agenda to establish the G20 as the pre-eminent global economic forum. In 2013 he was awarded the Knight in the National Order of the Légion d’honneur by the President of the French Republic.

Maria Atkinson AM

Start date: April 2016

Maria Atkinson is a sustainability strategist with extensive experience in governance, strategy, organisational and market transformation, business development and stakeholder engagement. As director of Maria Atkinson Consultancy Pty Ltd, she helps clients ranging from governments to non-government organisations and research institutions to articulate and deliver sustainability outcomes for projects or organisations.

On top of her consultancy services, Maria sits on a number of Boards such The Ethics Centre and the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust. She was a previous Chair of the UN Environment Program Sustainable Buildings & Climate Initiative in 2010 and 2011, and a Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Sustainable Construction in 2008 and 2009. In 2012, Maria was honoured to be awarded a Member of the General Division of the Order of Australia (AM) for “service to the construction and real estate sector, particularly as a leader and contributor to environmentally sustainable building development in Australia”.

Susan Jeanes

Start date: April 2016

Susan JeanesSusan Jeanes is a Principal at Jeanes Holland and Associates, which assists companies that are developing and promoting the goals of sustainability, particularly in emerging renewable energy sector. Susan has worked closely with the Australian renewable energy and sustainability sectors for more than two decades, most recently in her roles as the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Geothermal Energy Association, the national body representing the Australian geothermal energy industry, and previously as the Chief Executive Officer of the Renewable Energy Generators Australia.

Susan is a director of The Climate Institute, and Chair of the South Australian Centre for Geothermal Energy Research and the Centre for Energy Technology. Prior to 2002, she worked exclusively in the political area as Advisor to the former Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill on climate change, renewable energy and the urban environment, and serving the Federal Parliament as the Member for Kingston. Susan has tertiary qualifications in Politics and Environmental Studies.

Jonathan Jutsen

Start date: April 2016

Jonathan JutsenJonathan Jutsen is the Chair of the Australian Alliance to Save Energy (A2SE), a not for profit organisation committed to making Australia an energy productive country, and is leading the program to double Australia’s energy productivity (2xEP). A2SE also has an active EP innovation initiative, and runs the annual Summer Study on Energy Productivity.

Jonathan is also a steering committee member on Global Alliance for Energy Productivity. He has been a leading figure in Australia and internationally in the energy and carbon management field for over 3 decades. In 1984 he founded Energetics, a leading consulting company on greenhouse gas mitigation and energy management, which he recently left after 32 years. Jonathan has tertiary qualifications in Chemical Engineering and Energy Technology. Jonathan has been selected as one of the 100 most influential engineers in Australia by IEAust.

Meg McDonald

Start date: April 2016

Meg McDonaldMeg McDonald has career experience at senior levels in business and government across the fields of energy and environment.

From 2013-15 Meg served as Chief Operating Officer of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC). Previously, from 2010-2013,  Meg was CEO of Low Carbon Australia Limited (LCAL), leading LCAL’s development of innovative financial solutions for energy efficiency and investment partnerships for financing projects deploying low emissions technologies. Over three years, LCAL financed more than $80 million in projects valued at over $270 million. LCAL merged with the CEFC in 2013.

From 2002-2010, Meg held roles with global resources and manufacturing corporation, Alcoa, initially as General Manager, Corporate Affairs for Alcoa in Australia, and later as Director, Global Issues, Alcoa Inc. in New York and as global President of Alcoa Foundation, where she pioneered innovative sustainability partnerships and worked with business development teams, helping develop and deliver major international growth projects.  The Foundation was one of the largest US corporate foundations, managing a fund with assets of over US$500 mill and which made annual grants up to US$50 million across 24 countries in environment, sustainability and social projects.

Whilst a member of the Australian Public Service from 1978-2002, Meg had roles across a variety of portfolios, including Transport, Aviation, Finance and Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). With DFAT (1987-2002), she served as a senior Australian diplomat, including in Geneva, as Assistant Secretary, Environment and Antarctic Branch, (responsible for Australia’s international environment treaty negotiations, and the Antarctic treaties) and in the Australian Embassy in Washington as Australia’s Deputy Chief of Mission to the United States.  As Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment, in 1997-98, Meg was Australia’s lead negotiator for the Kyoto Protocol and played a key role in shaping those negotiations and other environment treaties.

Meg holds an Honours Degree in Applied Science from the University of NSW and has served on boards and a variety of advisory bodies in Australia and the United States.

Dr Katherine Woodthorpe

Start date: April 2016

Dr Katherine WoodthorpeDr Katherine Woodthorpe is an experienced non-executive Director, serving on boards ranging from ASX listed companies to research institutions and government entities for over 19 years. She currently serves on six boards as well as an adviser to others and as a Council member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She was the Chief Executive of the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association Ltd (AVCAL) between 2006 and 2013, Prior to AVCAL, she held a broad range of management and board positions, both in Australia and overseas.

Dr Woodthorpe has a deep understanding of the private equity and venture capital industries as well as the superannuation industry in the financial sector, and a strong track record in a broad range of technology orientated industries including mining and healthcare. She has been cited in various media as one of Australia’s most influential people in innovation.

Statement of Expectation

Ministerial Statements of Expectation articulate the Government’s expectations to their portfolio bodies, whilst respecting areas of independence of the body in accordance with the legislation establishing it.

Statement of Expectation – Minister Mcfarlane – 23 December 2014 (PDF 93KB)