The peak body for working people has welcomed Bill Shorten’s announcement of a much-needed Just Transition Authority (JTA) to ensure that the people and communities affected by a changing energy sector are not left at the mercy of big energy companies that operate in an energy policy vacuum.
The announcement of a Just Transition Authority to ensure a just transition for affected workers and communities is a welcome change from the nearly six years of infighting, chaos, and uncertainty under the Abbott/Turnbull/Morrison Government.
The JTA will co-ordinate and oversee transition in consultation with communities, working people and industry. This framework for a just transition is consistent with international best practice.
The ACTU also welcomes a commitment to pool redundancy and redeployment opportunities, a requirement for power station owners to give at least three years’ notice of any closures, and proactive investment in affected areas to create local jobs.
Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary Sally McManus:
“The people who have devoted their working lives to keeping the lights on in our country deserve to have their future looked after.
“We cannot see a repeat of sudden, unplanned closures such as Port Augusta and Hazelwood where workers and communities had the rug pulled out from under them with little or no notice.
“The Abbott/Turnbull/Morrison Government hung working people out to dry. They are consumed with in-fighting and indecision, and working people and communities affected by energy transition were left at the mercy of global energy companies.
“The Just Transition Authority will ensure that working people and their communities have a say in what happens in their towns and regions instead of leaving the decision making to faceless executives in boardrooms on the other side of the world.
“We need to ensure new jobs in renewable energy are fairly paid and secure.
“We must ensure as energy technology changes that people who have worked in our energy sector and the communities they live have the opportunities, support and investment they need to thrive.”