Coal power workers call for Energy Transition Authority

Coal-fired power station at night (coal workers)
Image: Shutterstock

Workers from coal-fired power stations and domestic thermal coal mines have met in Sydney to urge the federal government to establish a federal Energy Transition Authority. 

“Given the speed at which coal fire power stations are now accelerating toward closure the Federal Government has to establish an Energy Transition Authority this year or it will probably be too late,” Mining & Energy Union general president Tony Maher said.

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“If Australia doesn’t get an Energy Transition Authority established in time it would be a moral failure, because it’s wrong to expect blue collar workers to bear the brunt of the nation’s climate change action when the costs could easily be shared.”

Peter Compton, an operator at Mount Piper Power Station near Lithgow, said workers had a front-seat view of the immense changes facing the industry, but their interests were not being taken into account in government planning. 

“Coal-fired power station closures are going to have an enormous impact on the grid and need to be planned for. Closures are also going to have an enormous impact on our lives and communities and these outcomes need to planned for too,” he said. 

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“I support the call for a federal Energy Transition Authority; and I’m looking forward to talking with other energy workers from around Australia about how we navigate all the changes ahead.” 

The two-day meeting brings together delegates from 25 facilities from Tasmania, Victoria, NSW, Queensland and Western Australia. 

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