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The Coal Conundrum: A Hypothetical


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For this hypothetical, hosted by journalist and broadcaster Ali Moore, we’re bringing together experts across a range of different fields to work through the ethical quandaries at the centre of Australia’s coal conundrum.

Seventy per cent of the world’s steel is made using coking coal, and right now there’s no match when it comes to abundance and affordability. In this hypothetical challenge, the government is backing a new steel-making coal mine – promising big demand, high prices and a long-term economic future for the local town. But: it’s going to cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Would you invest? What are the competing issues at play and whose rights take precedence?

Our expert panel will roleplay their way through this ethical minefield. Stepping into key roles such as the mining CEO, the investor, the banker, the local Mayor and the Indigenous community leader, they’ll explore the tensions between shareholder and stakeholder primacy when it comes to climate change. Witness first hand just how complex the road to net zero can be.

Dr KEN HENRY as the Bank CEO
GRAEME SAMUEL as the Bank Investor
JODIE SIZER as the Local Indigenous Corporation representative
KELLY VEA VEA as the Local Mayor
DAN GOCHER as the Climate Campaigner
DIRK MATTEN as the Federal Politician

Presented in partnership with Trinity College – The University of Melbourne and the Gourlay Family


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Dan Gocher

Dan Gocher is the Director of Climate & Environment at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR). ACCR is a research and advocacy organisation that engages with ASX-listed companies on a range of environment and social issues, including decarbonisation and climate-related lobb... Read more

Ken Henry

Dr Ken Henry, AC is a non-executive director of the Australian Securities Exchange, Cape York Partnership and Accounting for Nature Ltd. He is Chair of Wildlife Recovery Australia and the Australian Climate and Biodiversity Foundation. Ken is an economist and former public servant, serving as the Se... Read more

Dirk Matten

Professor Dirk Matten is a Professor at the Schulich School of Business in Canada, where he holds the Hewlett Packard Chair in Corporate Social Responsibility and is the Associate Dean of Research. He is also the founding director of Schulich’s Centre of Excellence in Responsible Business. He has ... Read more

Graeme Samuel

Graeme Samuel​ ​is a corporate advisor with specialist expertise in competition and consumer policy and regulation, communications and media, corporate governance, strategic planning and public policy​.​ He was a member of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority’s ​i​nquiry ... Read more

Jodie Sizer

Jodie Sizer is a Djap Wurrung/Gunditjmara woman, long time Torquay resident and the inaugural CEO of the Great Ocean Road Coast and Parks Authority commencing in July 2021. Jodie has held a prominent leadership role, advocating and leading community led impact and transformative change with Aborigin... Read more

Kelly Vea Vea

Kelly Vea Vea has spent most of her life in Central Queensland coal communities. Her family has been in the Australian mining industry for four generations and her heritage spans back to the coalfields of Wales and Scotland. Kelly has lived in Moranbah for the last 15 years raising her family with h... Read more

Nikki Williams

Dr Nikki Williams is a non-executive director of both Tellus Holdings and Neuroscience Research Australia and chairman of the NeuRA Foundation. She is an ambassador of the Australian Indigenous Education Foundation and patron of Women in Mining (NSW). Previous roles include CEO and company secretary... Read more

Ali Moore

Ali Moore has more than 25 years experience as a journalist and broadcaster, working for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Australia’s Nine Network, and for the BBC’s global news network, based in Singapore. She has covered major news and current affairs events across the region... Read more


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