SA GOVT SUFFERS THE WORST RENEWABLE ENERGY JOB LOSS IN THE COUNTRY: NEW ABS FIGURES
The South Australian Government must act on the renewable energy jobs loss crisis after ABS figures released yesterday showed a staggering 50 percent drop in renewable energy jobs in the three years up to 2014-15.
The figures show jobs in South Australia’s renewable energy sector sunk to an all time low of 940 in 2014/15 following a peak of 2,360 three years earlier.
Claire O’Rourke, National Director of Solar Citizens, said that the Abbott-era attack on the renewables industry had no doubt played a large part in this but that the South Australian Government could be doing more to confront the attack on solar by the SA Power Network.
“Last year the SA Power Networks launched an extraordinary attack on solar homes attempting to add a separate discriminatory fee against solar homeowners. Whilst this was defeated, SAPN is still attempting to push through changes to electricity prices that would harm solar. This company, central to the State’s electricity system, has boasted it is seeking to halve solar uptake, which is a clear case for the SA Govt to intervene.
“Laws that ensure solar owners are not discriminated against, a fair price for solar exports in South Australia and support for projects like large scale solar would certainly help deliver on the fantastic ambition the SA Government has set in terms of making the transition towards renewable energy.
“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 on this great opportunity.”
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.