15 September, 2021 at 10am (AEST)






Claire Boyle
[email protected]

How can Australia’s agriculture sector capitalise on opportunities in a low emissions future?

It’s the question on everyone’s mind and it’s also the name of a landmark new report from economic consultants Ernst & Young (EY).

On Wednesday, 15 September we launched the report, which we commissioned EY to produce.

Find out how good climate policy can help farming families diversify their incomes, and increase productivity and profit.

Speakers will include:

  • Elizabeth Rose (Partner EY)
  • Fiona Simson (President of National Farmers’ Federation)
  • Peter Walsh (Leader of the Victorian Nationals)
  • Charlie Prell (Farmers for Climate Action Chair)

A briefing on the report will be followed by a panel discussion facilitated by former editor of the Weekly Times, Ed Gannon.

Image credit: Angus Emmott Photography

The real climate action question for farmers and regional communities is not who’s going to pay for it, it’s “Who’s going to profit?”


Fiona Simson

President of the National Farmers Federation, Fiona Simson is a farmer from the Liverpool Plains in NSW where she, husband Ed and family run a mixed farming enterprise including broad acre farming and breeding commercial poll Hereford cattle. With tertiary qualifications in business and education, Fiona’s passion for local food production and the growth and sustainability of rural and regional Australia led to a career in local government as an elected Councillor in Liverpool Plains Shire Council and an elected representative of NSW Farmers’ Association.

In 2011, she became the first woman President of the Association retaining that position for a full four year term. Passionate about the power of a unified voice for agriculture, Fiona also believes in its role in a strong and vibrant future for regional Australia. Fiona sits on the Board of NRMA (NSW), the Australian Made Campaign Ltd, AgStewardship Australia and the Australian Farmers Fighting Fund. Fiona was elected President of the National Farmers’ Federation in November 2016

Ed Gannon

Ed Gannon is a former editor of the Weekly Times, Australia’s largest rural newspaper and website. He was editor in two stints; from January 2007 to June 2017, moving to be publisher before resuming the editorship in July 2018  until mid 2021. He was also Editor-in-Chief of News Corp Rural.

Ed has always been passionate about telling stories of agriculture and rural Australia. He grew up on a dairy farm in Gippsland and maintains strong links to farming.

He started his career with The Weekly Times in 1990, before moving to the Herald Sun as a Reporter–Section Editor in 1995. In 1999, he returned to The Weekly Times.

Ed was also a co-host of The Ag Show on Sky News Business, editor of Australia’s only agribusiness magazine, AgJournal, a columnist with the Herald Sun from 2010-2021, a regular guest on ABC TV’s News Breakfast since 2011 and is a former president of the Rural Press Club of Victoria.

Peter Walsh MP

Peter Walsh was born and raised in Boort in Northern Victoria. Before entering Parliament in November 2002, Peter operated an irrigated horticulture and cropping enterprise, producing tomatoes, cereals, oilseeds and legumes. Peter has been President of the Victorian Farmers Federation, a Board Member of the National Farmers Federation and Director of SPC Limited – just to name a few of his leadership roles. Peter was the Minister for Agriculture and the Minister for Water in the 2010- 2014 Coalition Government, is now the Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Aboriginal Affairs and Regional Victoria and was elected leader of the Victorian Nationals following the November 2014 election.

Elizabeth Rose

Elizabeth Rose is a Partner with Ernst & Young’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services Team based in Brisbane.Liz is a chemical engineer who specialises in climate change policy, climate risk, greenhouse gas emissions, emissions reduction and mitigation.

Liz has over 15 years’ experience providing advice to leading corporates and governments in relation to climate change risk and opportunity, including leading the delivery of EY’s report  to Queensland government, Capitalising on Queensland’s opportunities in a net zero emissions future.

Charlie Prell

Charlie Prell is a sheep farmer from Crookwell, an hour north of Canberra in the Southern Tablelands of NSW and Chair of Farmers for Climate Action. He is one of four farmers under the Crookwell 2 windfarm. He has had 20 years of experience in renewables, focusing on wind farms. He is a strong public supporter of the benefits wind and solar farms can bring to small regional communities. He is a passionate advocate for an inclusive “benefit sharing” model for renewable energy developments, where the whole community benefits from the infrastructure, not just the few who host it. He worked as the NSW Regional Organiser for the Australian Wind Alliance (now the RE-Alliance) for 5 years from July 2014 until August 2019.

Charlie was part of the working group and then the steering committee that formed “Farmers for Climate Action”. He was previously co-chair and deputy chair of Farmers for Climate Action. He has been Chair of Farmers for Climate Action since October 2020.

Watch the Recording

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