In June 2021, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced $2 billion of investment in publicly-owned renewable energy. The $2 billion Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund will build more renewable energy assets and infrastructure in the sunshine state, creating heaps of good jobs in the process.
This comes after a year of incredible campaigning by AYCC Queensland volunteers, alongside unions friends in the movement, for big investment in publicly-owned clean energy to power homes and regional economies across the state. Throughout 2020, volunteers knocked on doors, engaged local businesses and met with MPs across the state to build mass support for investment in clean energy.
“We've been working super hard on this for over a year lobbying our MPs, talking to local businesses, sharing our stories and persuading our friends to sign our open letter! Everywhere Premier Palaszczuk and her Ministers have gone they've heard us calling for a #RenewableRecovery... I remember when this campaign started in October last year as a small group of volunteers armed with only clipboards and some conversation training. It's brilliant how much we've achieved then - not only this news but other recent announcements like a $145 million investment in Renewable Energy Zones. This shows just how much a group of committed young people can achieve when we work together and play to our strengths!” - Garrett, AYCC Cairns
AYCC Cairns volunteers with a copy of our #RenewableRecovery pledge signed by Minister Craig Crawford, one of over a dozen Queensland Labor MPs to show their support.
We know this win was only possible thanks to an incredible alliance of Queenslanders, and the leadership of workers and unionists in the energy sector, who are advocating passionately for a just transition. We’re proud to have worked in solidarity with the Electrical Trades Union, Together Union, Professionals Australia and a network of community groups to demonstrate the breadth of support for publicly-owned renewables.
These kinds of investments are exactly what we need to see: huge public investment into clean energy and secure jobs. We know Governments can deliver real climate solutions like this and the campaigns we run can get politicians over the line - we’ve just seen it.
Budget Night: Young people call on Government to “Fund Our Future Not Gas” in candle-lit message at Parliament
While Treasurer Josh Frydenberg was announcing the 2021-22 Federal budget, young volunteers from the Australian Youth Climate Coalition spelled out their candle-lit message to the Government on Parliament lawn: “Fund Our Future, Not Gas”.
“Young people will be paying the bill of this Federal Budget for decades, whilst simultaneously living through worsening climate change impacts. We are calling on the Treasurer not to exacerbate the climate crisis for our generation by giving publicly-funded handouts to dangerous gas,” Alex Fuller, National Director of the Australian Youth Climate Coalition said.
“Last night, we sent the Government a clear message: “Fund Our Future, Not Gas”. We will not stand by while this Government sells out our future to prioritise the fossil fuel industry. Young people deserve a fighting chance for a safe climate future: a gas-led recovery will intensify the climate crisis and endanger our future, while forcing us to pay the bill,” she said.
Gas is fueling the climate crisis but the Morrison Government is pouring billions of dollars into subsidising and expanding the gas industry.
“First Nations communities, young people and communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis are leading the resistance to the Government’s gas-led recovery. It’s time for the Government to listen,” Ms Fuller said.
“Recovering from COVID-19, the Government had an unprecedented opportunity to invest in climate solutions: quickly transitioning to 100% renewable energy and investing in creating jobs that care for the climate and our communities. Instead, by funding a gas-led recovery, the Government has failed our generation,” Ms Fuller concluded.