Under Section 22 of the Australian Energy Market Commission Establishment Act 2004 (SA), AEMC Commissioners must disclose any direct or indirect conflicts of interest in any matter the AEMC is considering. These disclosures are formally minuted and are also published on the AEMC website.

A robust and transparent approach to disclosure of interests and managing potential conflicts is essential to preserve the integrity of the AEMC’s decision-making and to ensure that people with relevant experience and knowledge are available to serve the Commission.

AEMC and the Commissioners are required:

  • to identify interests that may fall within a ‘direct or indirect’ interest that could conflict with the proper performance of the Commissioner’s functions
  • to manage conflicts of interest if they arise in relation to matters being considered at a meeting of the Commission
  • to disclose any interest of a Commissioner at a meeting of the Commission
  • to record any disclosure of a conflict of interest by a Commissioner in the minutes of the Commission meeting
  • to make a decision about the appropriate action to be taken to manage the potential conflict (if any)
  • to record any decision about the appropriate action to be taken (if any) in the minutes of the meeting of the Commission
  • to provide a summary of these matters and decisions in the AEMC's annual report.

The AEMC has established processes to put into effect these requirements (including cases where it is possible that a perception of a conflict of interest might arise).

Any third parties with concerns about possible conflicts of interest are invited to raise them with the AEMC’s Chief Executive.

The AEMC has a policy of open disclosure regarding arrangements by each of the Commissioners for the ongoing management of conflicts of interest.

Ms Anna Collyer was appointed as the full time Chairperson of the AEMC by the Governor of South Australia with effect from 1 February 2021. Ms Collyer is appointed for a period of 5 years and her term expires on 31 January 2026.

Ms Collyer was a partner of law firm Allens up until 31 December 2020 and is entitled to a share in profits of the firm for work undertaken prior to 31 December 2020. To manage any actual or perceived conflict arising from this entitlement, Ms Collyer will have no involvement in the AEMC’s final selection and approval process for engaging external legal service providers during 2021. 

Ms Collyer is entitled to post retirement income from Allens following her retirement from the partnership, which is determined by a set formula. To manage any actual or perceived conflict, Ms Collyer has waived her entitlement to this income for the duration of her term as Chairperson.

On 13 October 2021, the AEMC received a rule change request from Dr Kerry Schott AO, who was at the time Chair of the Energy Security Board, to change the Reliability Panel’s obligation to prepare the 2022 reliability standard and settings review (2022 RSSR rule change). The request proposes to remove the requirement for the Reliability Panel to review the reliability settings in 2022, with the ESB to instead undertake the review as part of the capacity mechanism reforms. On 1 November 2021, Ms Collyer was appointed as Chair of the ESB, alongside her role as Chair of the AEMC. To manage any actual or perceived conflict, on and from 24 November 2021 Ms Collyer has, and will for the duration of the rule change request, absent herself from the AEMC’s decision making (including not attending any agenda items at Commission meetings) in relation to the 2022 RSSR rule change (ERC0336). Further, Ms Collyer will not have access to Commission meeting papers related to the draft and final rule determinations for this rule change prior to the relevant Commission meetings being held and the relevant statutory decisions being made. 

Ms Collyer does not consider that she has any other commitments that give rise to conflicts that require management.

Mr Charles Popple was appointed as a part time Commissioner by the Governor of South Australia with effect from 17 February 2018. Mr Popple is appointed for a period of 5 years and his term expires on 16 February 2023.

On 13 October 2021, the AEMC received a rule change request from Dr Kerry Schott AO, who was at the time Chair of the Energy Security Board, to change the Reliability Panel’s obligation to prepare the 2022 reliability standard and settings review (2022 RSSR rule change). The request proposes to remove the requirement for the Reliability Panel to review the reliability settings in 2022, with the ESB to instead undertake the review as part of the capacity mechanism reforms. In April 2019, Mr Popple was appointed as Chair of the Reliability Panel, a position which he still holds. To manage any actual or perceived conflict, on and from 24 November 2021  Mr Popple has, and will for the duration of the rule change request, absent himself from the AEMC’s decision making (including not attending any agenda items at Commission meetings) in relation to the 2022 RSSR rule change (ERC0336). Further, Mr Popple will not have access to Commission meeting papers related to the draft and final rule determinations for this rule change prior to the relevant Commission meetings being held and the relevant statutory decisions being made.

Mr Popple does not consider that he has any other commitments that give rise to conflicts that require management.

Ms Allison Warburton was appointed as a part time Commissioner by the Governor of South Australia with effect from 12 March 2018. Ms Warburton is appointed for a period of 4 years and her term expires on 11 March 2022.

Ms Warburton is a director of, and holds a beneficial interest in, Lacuna Holdings Pty Ltd, which provides business and administrative support services to legal practitioners and small law firms. To manage any actual or perceived conflict, Ms Warburton will have no involvement in the AEMC’s final selection and approval process for engaging external legal service providers during the period in which she is a director of, or maintains an interest in, Lacuna Holdings Pty Ltd.

Ms Warburton does not consider that she has any other commitments that give rise to conflicts that require management.

Mrs Michelle Shepherd was appointed as a part time Commissioner by the Governor of South Australia with effect from 11 June 2021. Mrs Shepherd is appointed for a period of 3 years and her term expires on 10 June 2024.

Mrs Shepherd does not consider that she has any commitments that give rise to conflicts that require management.

Ms Merryn York was appointed as a part time Commissioner by the Governor of South Australia with effect from 25 August 2019. Ms York is appointed for a period of 5 years and her term expires on 24 August 2024.

Ms York does not consider that she has any commitments that give rise to conflicts that require management.