Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to speak in support of my nomination to join the Board of BHP Billiton (BHPB).

Ladies and gentlemen, as last year, my platform for election is the climate change and energy challengewe face, specifically its implications for BHPB shareholders.

At the BHPB Plc AGM in London last month, I congratulated the Company on the action it hastaken since I raised these matters last year. With its new climate change policy and scenario analysis,BHP Billiton is undoubtedly setting the standard for the global resource industry.

However, the real issue remains the urgency with which climate change must be addressed. Developments since the London AGM emphasisethat the new BHPB policy is wholly inadequate in this regard.

Earlier this month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued its bluntest warning yet in their 2014 Synthesis Report, calling for urgent action if “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts” are to be avoided. And this is a conservative, lowest-common denominator, consensus, which ignores the big risks of positive feedback “tipping points” already becoming evident in the Arctic, Antarctic, the Oceans and elsewhere.Once they take hold, they may be irreversible.

The International Energy Agency’s 2014 World Energy Outlook, released last week, warns that current and planned policies will lead to temperature increase in excess of 40C – to contain temperature below the official 20C target requires global emissions to peak within 5 years and then reduce rapidly.

Even then, evidence suggests that a 2C temperature increase will halt population growth in large parts of the world. A 4C increase will see substantial population decline, with escalating social conflict.

Why is this important for shareholders? The prosperity of BHPB depends upon a stable andgrowing global economy. This is incompatible with even a 20C temperature increase. Growth now depends upon a rapid transition to a low-carbon world. Stability requires urgent action, as further delay is cutting off our options to make that transition in good order.

The low-carbon economy represents the greatestvalue creation opportunity in human history, provided it is seized with proactive leadership.That is the leadership which BHPB must now demonstrate, and despite recent progress, I do not see that happening yet.

The Company’s risk management approach shows no sign of real urgency. It must go beyond the conservative IPCC conclusions to encompass the “tipping points” we now see developing.

The new policy implies a temperature increase of around 3C, which which would be extremelydamaging to shareholder value. It assumes that “fossil fuels will continue to be a significant part of the energy mix for decades”, which in a world with virtually no carbon budget remaining today, is nothing less than suicidal unless emergency programmes are initiated to make solutions such as Carbon Capture and Storage really work. There is no sign of BHPB, or the industry, making that commitment.

The Minerals Council of Australia, and the Business Council of Australia, substantially funded by BHPB,continue to undermine any sensible policy development, and BHPB itself has done nothing to contest the Australian government’s blatant climate change denialism.

Most importantly, BHPB’s strategy must move away from incrementally changing “business-as-usual”, to focus on rapid transition to the low-carbon economy, not least to avoid losing major opportunities for shareholder value creation.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Board has recommended against my appointment on the grounds that my experience and expertise do not meet the requirements of a BHPB Non-Executive Director. This response highlights governance issues which have lain dormant for years, as remuneration-driven short-termism has dominated corporate thinking.

I have the greatest respect for the competence of the existing board in a conventional sense. However, these are not conventional times and those self-same conventional skills are, in my view, blinding the Board to the great changes already taking place in the climate and energy arena.

Conventional recruitment processes ensure that directors are appointed in the existing Board’s own image. Whilst this may have been acceptable in the days of relatively predictable growth, in creating the low-carbon world we are in the midst of the greatest discontinuity, and opportunity, the world has ever seen. Company prosperity now depends upon avoiding myopic “groupthink” by complementing conventional skills with further board diversity and unconventional perspectives.

At the most fundamental level, it raises yet again the question of “What is a Company For?” Is it to supinely follow, and be shaped by, the dictates of governments and the market, optimising short-term returns? Or is it to use its undoubted influence and expertise in shaping a genuinely sustainable future?

Despite having access to the best possible scientific and risk advice, corporate leaders including BHPB, seem to take the former view. As a result, we are witnessing a fundamental failure of risk management and corporate governance as directors, in underplaying the real risks of climate change, abrogate their fiduciary responsibility to objectively assess and manage those risks and opportunities in the interests of their companies in perpetuity. Investors, with some notable exceptions, are equally complicit for not insisting that boards of directors take far more vigorous action.

BHPB, along with likeminded progressive organisations and investors, in their own self-interest must now publicly articulate the need for, and implement, radical action.

I believe that I am well-equipped to meet those unconventional needs and to assist in framing that action, so I appeal to you directly for shareholder support.

Thank you for your consideration, and thank you, Chairman, for the opportunity to speak to the meeting.

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