Decision engine to support the path to net zero

Chief Investigators

Prof. Mark Wallace, Opturion

Purpose of project

Industries and businesses play a crucial role in Australia in navigating a path to net-zero emissions. What we do in the next decade to limit emissions will be critical to the future. A transition towards a net zero world needs strategic planning, appropriate investment in technology and introduction of new business models, activities, products and processes for commercial and government organisations.

This project will design a platform as a proof of concept to explore the requirements of businesses and organisations seeking a path to net zero, and elicit the research and data requirements needed to enable consistent, globally informed optimal path planning. This project aims to describe the bigger picture well enough that every individual understands their place in it, and how they are contributing to the net zero goal, while at the same time creating an artefact that gives people the same understanding of the required steps for getting there.

Impact of project

This project has a series of projected impacts. First, the project will empower organisations in their decision making. The platform will help businesses to avoid huge disruptions and costs in achieving net zero plans, when simpler, more costs effective alternatives are available (or will shortly be made available). This will enable senior decision makers to understand the scale of the problem and make informed decisions about the best path to net zero.

Second, impact will be created as there is increased cohesion within organisations as there is increased, and shared, understanding of the relevant issues at hand as they plan their path to net zero. This common understanding of the issues will enable staff members from significantly different backgrounds (and potentially priorities) to reach a common view about the best path forward, enabling them to reach a common purpose. This will improve efficiency and enhance decision making within organisations seeking to pursue net zero goals.

Third, as the sophistication of the platform evolves (improved as further knowledge is embedded), it can grow to the point of ‘expert’ knowledge. This means the organisations path to net zero can be optimised based on the circumstances. For this to be successful, the user must be involved in the creation of the platform, making decisions on which assumptions to pursue. For example, do you act early while costs are low or postpone action to avoid risk but in the process incur higher costs.

Ultimately, these impacts will help accelerate industrial decarbonisation, which is critical in limiting global warming to 1.5C. This will be achieved by making it easier and more achievable for organisations to reach their net zero targets.

Project partners – industry and research

Opturion (Lead), AGL, Curtin University, Monash University, Sydney Water, UTS

Completion date

March 2023

Project code


Page last updated 19 December 2023