E-powering a decarbonised future

November 20 2023

E-powering a decarbonised future: Opportunities and challenges for Australia-China cooperation

Achieving a green energy future requires international cooperation. Australia and the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) shared goal to advance decarbonisation renders the two nations potential partners for this endeavour.

How can collaboration between the two nations can accelerate decarbonisation? What challenges lie in the quest for a decarbonised future? What are the new avenues for growth in Australia’s green economy?

The Australia-China Relations Institute at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS:ACRI), with support from the National Foundation for Australia-China Relations (NFACR), hosted a panel discussion exploring these questions and more.

Panellists included Associate Professor Emma Aisbett, Associate Director of the Zero Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific Initiative (ZCEAP) at the Australian National University; Dr Ross Lambie, Chief Economist at the Minerals Council of Australia; Professor Qinhua Xu, Professor of International Political Economy and International Relations at Renmin University of China; and Dr Yongping Zhai, Senior Advisor on Carbon-Neutrality at Tencent Holdings Ltd. The panel was moderated by Professor Tim Harcourt, UTS:ACRI Research Associate and Industry Professor and Chief Economist at the UTS Institute for Public Policy and Governance (IPPG).

Time: 12.30pm - 2.00pm AEDT 


transcript of the event is available.


About the speakers
Associate Professor Emma Aisbett

Emma Aisbett an Associate Professor at the ANU School of Law and Associate Director (Research) for the Zero-Carbon Energy for the Asia Pacific initiative at the Australian National University. Emma’s transdisciplinary research centres on collaborations with government, industry, and international organisations including the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. Her current research in the field of trade-related climate policy includes embedded emissions accounting frameworks, certification, and international green economy collaborations.

Dr Ross Lambie

Dr Ross Lambie is Chief Economist at the Minerals Council of Australia.

Ross has held positions as Chief Economist and Director of Economics and Industry Policy at the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and as Chief Economist at the Australian Government’s Department of the Environment and Energy, and as General Manager, Resource and Energy Economics at the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.

Ross has a strong academic background in economics, which culminated in him being awarded a PhD in Public Policy and Economics from the Australian National University.

Professor Qinhua Xu

Xu Qinhua, professor of the School of International Relations, Renmin University of China (RUC), master supervisor of international political economics, doctoral supervisor of international relations, postdoctoral supervisor. She is currently the vice dean of the National Academy of Development and Strategy (NADS) ,the executive dean of the Eurasian Research Institute, and the director of the International Energy and Environmental Strategy Research Center(CIEESS). Her research fields are energy, sustainable development and ecological civilization, regional security, etc., She has published more than 100 papers and academic articles especially on policies.

Dr Yongping Zhai

Special Advisor of Carbon Neutrality, Tencent. Former Chief of Energy Sector Group, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, Asian Development Bank. Dr. Yongping Zhai has been working on energy development in Asia and Africa for 25 years. He was in charge of overall energy policy coordination and technical support to ADB energy sector operations. He is also in charge of developing energy sector knowledge work for ADB and interacts with worldwide energy sector partners.

About the moderator
Professor Tim Harcourt

Tim Harcourt is the new Industry Professor and Chief Economist at the Institute for Public Policy and Governance (IPPG) at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). Professor Harcourt specialises in Australia’s economic engagement with the Global Economy particularly Asia, Latin America and Emerging Markets and has worked in both public policy and research roles in International Trade, Labour Markets, Climate Innovation and the Economics of Sport. He is passionate about making economics and international trade accessible to the whole community.

He is well known for his TV show The Airport Economist about his travels to over 60 countries to see what makes their economies tick and the potential trade opportunities with Australia.The Airport Economist is also a podcast and a best-selling book with a just released sequel The Airport Economist Flies Again! He also hosts two TV series on China and Australia The Big Picture and After the Pandemic.

Professor Harcourt joined UTS in April 2021 from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) where he was Professor of Practice in Economics at the UNSW Business School. He was also previously the first Chief Economist of the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) and Research Officer/Advocate with the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU), a role first held by Bob Hawke in the 1960s.

He has been an Adviser to two State Premiers and three Federal Cabinet Ministers and an Expert Panel Member to the Fair Work Commission (FWC) on Minimum Wages and Superannuation. He has also been an International Economist with the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and has worked as an Economist in the private sector in USA, UK and Israel.

You can find The Airport Economist TV series, podcast, books and blogs at www.theairporteconomist.com and www.footynomics.com.au.

Event Gallery


Event Information
November 20 2023
12:30 PM
In-person or online
Level 3 Auditorium, UTS Business School
14-28 Ultimo Road
Ultimo NSW 2007