Queensland Net Zero Mandate To Put 157,000 Jobs At Risk

Written by:
20 March 2024
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“The Queensland government’s emission reduction policies, including net zero emissions by 2050, has the potential to put up to 157,000 jobs across Queensland at risk, with the regions set to be hit the hardest,” said Saxon Davidson, Research Fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs.

Today, the IPA released a landmark research report titled, An analysis of the employment consequences of a net zero emissions target in Queensland, which found the emissions reduction policies of the Queensland government will put up to 157,000 jobs at risk across the state.

In addition to the 157,000 jobs to be put at risk, the research also found;

  • 69 per cent of the jobs threatened by Queensland’s net zero policies are located in regional areas. All of the twenty most affected state electorates are in regional Queensland.
  • Central Queensland shapes to be the hardest hit region, where fifteen per cent of jobs are at risk region-wide, and over 29 per cent of Queensland’s at-risk jobs are located.
  • The heaviest job losses will occur in agriculture, coal mining, and electricity supply sectors.

“Many regional communities face the risk of being wiped out as the local industries they rely on for employment, and the rest of the country relies on for energy and food, are to be destroyed due to reckless emission reduction policies,” said Mr Davidson.

The Legislative Assembly seats with the highest proportion of jobs at risk are:

  • Gregory—where the 7,813 jobs at risk is equivalent to 33.3 per cent of all local jobs;
  • Burdekin—where the 9,712 jobs at risk is equivalent to 31.6 per cent of all local jobs;
  • Callide—where the 8,091 jobs at risk is equivalent to 30.5 per cent of all local jobs;
  • Warrego—where the 5,346 jobs at risk is equivalent to 22.4 per cent of all local jobs; and
  • Mirani—where the 5,681 jobs at risk is equivalent to 20.8 per cent of all local jobs.

“Queensland’s political leaders have proposed myopic energy policies focused solely on emissions reduction, and not affordability and energy reliability. You only have to look at the recent blackouts in Victoria to tell you that this is not the way,” said Mr Davidson.

“Energy security must be at the centre of any future energy plan for Queensland, as well as addressing the cost of record energy bills that are having a huge impact on family budgets and small and medium enterprises.”

Previous IPA research has shown, that for every one job created in ‘renewable activities’ nationally since 2010, five manufacturing jobs have been destroyed. Yet, both Labor and the LNP have publicly committed to the policy of net zero emissions by 2050.

“The Queensland government has claimed its pumped-hydro plan will create jobs in regional Queensland. However, this plan will require the construction of a minimum of fourteen new dam structures, yet a dam has not been built in Queensland since 2011,” said Mr Davidson.

“Queensland’s political leaders need to get fair dinkum on the state’s energy future. They need to back the regions, yet these communities are being held back by short-sighted policies which risk closing our critical industries, destroying jobs, and driving energy bills and grocery prices higher.”

To download the research report click here.

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