Communities rally to say ‘yes to renewables’


Events supporting renewable energy projects were held on Feb. 2024, bringing together workers, families, business leaders, climate experts and environmental groups such as the Latrobe Valley Sustainability Group, and unions such as the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU).

Melbourne-based, Friends of the Earth Australia encouraged the community events through its “Yes 2 Renewables” campaign, which advocates for 100% renewable energy by 2030, good jobs and careers in the renewables sector, the role of communities at the centre of the renewables transition, and a fair and just transition for workers.

Wendy Farmer Organiser Friends of the Earth said the shift to renewable energy is crucial for a sustainable future, and it’s heartening to see regional communities championing this critical industry and thousands of job opportunities it represents.”

Kristen McDonald Coordinator Illawarra-based action group Electrify 2515, which has the goal of creating an all-electric community, said it was exciting to think of the opportunities that renewable energy could bring to her north Wollongong community.

“Cleaner air, healthier homes, cheaper bills and local jobs, we just have to make sure we do it with enough speed and ambition to address the climate crisis in time,” McDonald said.

Participating in the Yes 2 Renewables events, the ACTU called for an energy network of wind and solar farms connected to fully renewable industries to help meet the power needs for the next 100 years and beyond.

Michele O’Nell President ACTU said decarbonising the economy could create hundreds of thousands of good jobs, healthier communities, and a renewed national prosperity, while safeguarding Australians from spiralling climate crisis.

“Renewables have proven time and again that they’re the cheapest form of energy. More renewables on the grid means lower power bills – incredibly important during this cost-of-living crisis,” O’Nell said.

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