RENEW AUSTRALIA: Greens Senator Andrew Bartlett.
RENEW AUSTRALIA: Greens Senator Andrew Bartlett. Australian Parliament House

Bartlett backs up '5500 jobs' energy claim

QUEENSLAND Greens Senator Andrew Bartlett has moved to back up claims his party's approach to energy would create 5500 jobs a year in Queensland - but the policy would have direct consequences for jobs in Gladstone.

Last week, Senator Bartlett said the 1000 jobs estimated to be created by QCLNG and Arrow Energy's new gas supply agreement were "not good enough", calling on the Palaszczuk Government to pull its support from the project.

In response to questions from The Observer, Senator Bartlett's office has detailed how the Greens' 5500 jobs figure was arrived at.

The number came from Renew Australia, the energy policy the Greens took to the 2016 federal election.

The policy, costed by the Parliamentary Budget Office, aims to transition the Australian economy from its current fossil fuel-dependent status to one powered by 90% renewable energy by 2030.

A government adopting the policy would establish a $500 million authority tasked with planning and driving the transition, and directing $5 billion in new energy generation over four years.

The 5500 jobs would be full-time equivalent in the design and construction phases of public projects, mostly in the solar industry.

The authority would also administer a $250 million transition fund designed to provide a "just transition" for coal and gas workers, as well as communities affected by the shutdown of power stations and mines brought on by strict new emissions standards.

Those communities and workers would include those living in and around Gladstone.

The Greens' scheme includes a possible schedule for power station closures, including that of Gladstone Power Station in 2028 and Biloela's Callide B & C by 2021 and 2020 respectively.

The party's website said the massive investment in public infrastructure would be funded by debt, "taking advantage of record low interest rates".

"These productive, publicly owned assets will be able to produce a modest return that will pay off the investment over time," it said.



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