QUEENSLAND GOVT MUST ACT URGENTLY TO HALT RENEWABLE JOBS SLIDE: NEW ABS FIGURES
Queensland risks losing its title as Australia’s ‘sunshine state’ after ABS figures released yesterday reveal a shocking 30 percent drop in renewable energy jobs from 2011-12 to 2014-15.
Queensland has lost its mantle of the leading state for renewable energy jobs to NSW after total jobs in the sector fell from a high of 5,580 2011/12 to 3,570 2013/14. NSW increased its job count to 3,990 in 2013/14 from 3,230 in 2012/13.
Claire O’Rourke, National Director of Solar Citizens, said the renewable job figures showed it was more pressing than ever for the Palaszczuk Government to begin delivering on its election promises to get solar on 1 million roofs, ensure a fair price for solar and begin the transition to 50% renewable energy by 2030.
“The tag team of attacks on renewables by the Abbott and Newman governments have left Queensland lagging behind and at risk of missing out on the global renewable boom,” she said.
“The Palaszczuk Government must act urgently to kick-start the state’s catch up and cash in on the renewable jobs boom powering up elsewhere in the world.
“Renewables and solar are a jobs and economic growth powerhouse, critical to fill the gap left as the mining industry wanes in Queensland. Already jobs in solar power alone outweigh jobs in electricity generation in coal and gas nation-wide.
“Elsewhere around the world, employment in renewables is booming. According to a recent report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the global renewable energy industry employs 7.7 million people, directly or indirectly. Australia can’t miss out.
“The best thing the Queensland Government can do immediately is to double down on its efforts to deliver on its election promises.”
The new ABS statistics also reveal:
- National employment in renewable energy activity fell by three per cent from 2013-14 to 2014-15 continuing a trend from 2011-12.
- Solar energy (including roof-top solar PV, solar hot water and large scale solar PV) is the most significant source of renewable jobs, employing 8,310 people in 2014-15 and accounting for 59% of all renewable energy jobs.
- Employment in solar energy peaked at 14,350 in 2011-12.