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Breaking new ground: Challenges and opportunities of a changing energy landscape in regional Australia (Central Coast NSW)

August 04, 2022

A new Blueprint institute series takes a deep dive into the regional realities of Australia’s shift to a clean energy future—and what that will mean for communities on the ground. Alongside the already released South-West Queensland paper, they examine Central Queensland, the Latrobe Valley of Victoria, the Central Coast of NSW, and the Collie region of WA. Across these five regions—home to all our remaining coal-fired generators, and most of our coal mines—Blueprint’s analysis finds that while opportunities are abundant (in renewable energy and more broadly), and significant prospective projects are underway, uncertainty caused by a lack of definitive policy direction is hampering their development. 

In the Central Coast region of New South Wales:

  • Between 2022 and 2025, new renewable projects could offer 5,080 construction jobs, and 320 ongoing maintenance and operations positions.

This represents a significant opportunity, but also a stark reality check—government must do more to enable wider regional economic diversification in these communities.

Expecting renewables alone to compensate for the stable, high-paying jobs that coal has provided is unrealistic. But importantly, our analysis finds that all of the regions studied are full of untapped potential that the clean energy economy, broad diversification, private investment, and targeted government backing in vital areas can unlock. 

“As coal declines, New South Wales’ Central Coast has the opportunity to secure a sustainable future built around renewable energy and clean industry. But supportive state and federal policy must match local ambition,” said CEO David Cross.

A detailed outline of the opportunities available to New South Wales’ Central Coast is available in the full paper.

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