Australia is taking steps towards making the energy sector cleaner by moving towards renewable sources of energy. The country has invested a significant amount in establishing a renewables dependent energy sector. However, the current administration running these projects recently came under the spotlight after a survey on renewables revealed that locals around the plants were not engaged in establishing their operation.
While the current range of employees covers a large portion of the country’s labor force, the projects do not adequately represent the local employment rates. This outcome is evident with the realization that the available labor force does not have the necessary skill-set required to run such a skill-intensive project. There are other factors in play, like the need to get contacts with an extensive supply network across the country, but the locals at a disadvantage. Renewables projects need input from essential parties to function effectively.
The trend is not an industry standard. Plants like the wind industry in Mortlake change the perception of energy companies by paying attention to the community needs. The new approach comes after the company faced opposition from local tenants during a previous establishment. Mortlake currently focuses on taking community opinions to account. Recently the company opted to run its transmission line underground after the public lobbied against overhead placement.
In retrospect, power plants in a local establishment also bring adversity between communities. Renewable energy projects pitch community members against each other. Community members with opinions favoring gas plants often go against other community members opting to establish renewables as sources of energy. According to a survey carried out in south wales, members of the community prefer renewables in the community because they hold more promise of future jobs.
However, there are mixed feelings concerning renewables providing long-lasting jobs to the community. In the future, community members in Narrabri and Gunnedah do not believe in renewables providing sustainable, long-term employment. There is a need for the renewable energy sector to prove that it can provide better jobs compared to gas plants. The industry setting up local alternatives to currently set supply chains and connected ventures can achieve this outcome.
While renewables are working on setting up a good rapport among the locals, it is evident that they still have a long way to go before they fully integrate with the community. Such plants can quicken this process by applying several options including setting up alternative ventures that absorb locals and listening more to the community concerns.