ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE

Encouraging worldwide awareness and action to protect our environment

The Environment Committee meets monthly to discuss environmental issues relevant to the Western Australian community in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

MEET THE COMMITTEE

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Convenor

Jonathan Oon

Specialist Area: Strategy and Innovation

Jonathan is a Manager of Strategy at RMIT University, responsible for shaping the University’s strategic priorities and leading projects to find solutions to its most pressing strategic and operational challenges. He has recently designed innovation programs to support researchers in developing the skills they need to implement their breakthrough ideas and is currently working on developing the University’s next 5-year strategic plan where he is focused on embedding the SDGs as a key priority for the University. Jonathan is intrigued by the potential of Universities, research institutions, innovation ecosystems, industry and government collaborating to design and deliver innovative solutions towards all of the SDGS. He has a particular interest in the circular economy, sustainable food systems and new models of economic and business development and distribution.

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Deputy Convenor

Melissa Arias

Specialist Area: Environment and Sustainability

Melissa Arias is driven by the pursuit of sustainability in Western Australia. She is a passionate advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals and mitigation of environmental degradation, and believes that each one of us that makes a small change, can make a greater difference. Melissa completed both a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Business, and testament to her passion for the field, topped her class in Managing in Sustainability following with an award from the Department of Communities. Melissa hopes that through advocacy and engagement with communities, schools and corporates, we can identify the opportunities aligned with adopting the SDGs and targets.

Oceans Lead

Amanda Elizabeth

Specialist Area: Oceans

Amanda completed her Bachelor of Marine Science degree at Murdoch University. She then went on to complete her Masters in Marine Biological Science at the University of Western Australia and will be completing her Master’s in Business Administration at Murdoch University this year. In 2019, she was awarded a Women in Shark Science Scholarship, from which she spent one month in South Africa studying endemic sharks. Amanda sits on the Board of Directors of the Australian Biome Project and acts as a spokesperson for Ocean Guardian’s Shark Shield. With a passion for the environment and conservation, Amanda created www.finfreesoup.com, a concept designed to shed light on Australia’s involvement in the shark fin trade. She has since turned this into a documentary for Discovery Channel’s Shark Week. Amanda continues to focus her passion and energy into uncovering new information about sharks as well as helping to protect them from anthropogenic influences.

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Sustainability Lead

Patrick Ilot

Specialist Area: Sustainability

 

Patrick is the founder and Director of Perspektiv, a Perth based sustainability consultancy. Perspektiv apply the principles of sustainable development to drive business excellence and since being established in March 2017 have established themselves as preeminent leaders within the infrastructure sector, having been awarded the Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia’s (ISCAs) Impact Award and also their Outstanding Achievement Award. Patrick a sustainability expert, originally qualified as an Environmental Scientist and now has more than 20 years industry experience working on the planning, design, procurement, construction, operation and maintenance of all classes of infrastructure. Patrick is passionate about all of the UN’s SDG’s, but in particular Goal 9: Building resilient infrastructure, promoting sustainable industrialization and fostering innovation, and sees this as the key to unlocking Western Australia’s unique opportunity to lead the country and the region towards a better future.

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Youth Representative

Natalie Muhl

I am currently finishing my double science major of Environmental Management and Sustainability/ Conservation and Wildlife biology at Murdoch University and have a passion for community engagement and sustainable development. Throughout the past three years, I have applied my passion through multiple volunteer roles, encouraging students and community members to collaborate in environmental management projects. In addition to this, I spend time with my family, friends and my two dogs; Harriett and Audrey. I enjoy going on nature walks, reading field guides and painting with my fiancé. My goal within the Environmental Committee is to have a positive impact within Western Australian, collaborating with other members on events and engaging with the youth of WA.

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Agricultural Lead

Maria Then

Maria completed a Bachelor of Science (Honours in Geology) with majors in geophysics, applied geology and geography at The University of Adelaide. After completing her studies, she moved to Perth to work as a Geologist in mining and exploration in consulting and owner-operated roles. She then went on to work as a Geo-Environmental Scientist and has since gained exposure to underground, open pit, exploration geology, laboratory-based work and contaminated site investigations. As a strong advocate for climate change adaptation strategies, sustainable energy and environmental action, Maria is now undertaking a Master of Renewable Energy at Murdoch University. Maria is particularly interested in managing natural resources to create a more sustainable agricultural future with science-based solutions to balance industry and community needs. As a newcomer to the UNAAWA Environment Committee, Maria is excited to harness her passion for the environment and engage with others to create a positive public and environmental impact.

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Youth Representative

Ella Wylynko

Ella is a student at UWA studying a Bachelor of Philosophy, Politics and Economics. Her passion lies in sustainability, environmentalism and regeneration, with a focus on ecological economics, climate action, and sustainable cities. Ella is currently the Environment and Sustainability Project Lead at Venture - a student innovation centre at UWA; she is on the UNAAWA Environment Committee; and is directing the Sustainable Development Awards - an initiative to encourage students to reflect on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and to provide mentors to assist those students in creating tangible solutions. In 2018, Ella won the Fiona Staniforth Creativity and Innovation Award and was a finalist for WA Youth of the Year.