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Council advocates for Latrobe City in Canberra

City needs support to overcome the loss of jobs and business impacts of energy station early closure.

By news@gippsland - 19th March 2021 - Back to News

The Federal Government has heard Latrobe City Council’s call for a taskforce to oversee the City’s transition to a new era in the lead-up to the closure of the Yallourn power station in 2028. Energy Australia, the power station owner, last week announced it would close the Yallourn four years earlier than planned. This will result in the loss of approximately 500 jobs at the power station and also impact businesses that service it.

Latrobe City Council Deputy Mayor Cr Darren Howe (left) and Mayor Cr Sharon Gibson meet with Deputy
Prime Minister Michael McCormack in Canberra

Latrobe City Council Deputy Mayor Cr Darren Howe (left) and Mayor Cr Sharon Gibson meet with Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack in Canberra

A Council delegation, including Mayor Cr Sharon Gibson and Deputy Mayor Cr Darren Howe, this week me with Members of Parliament – including Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, and Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Chris Bowen - and their staff in Canberra.

Government to support Latrobe City transition

The meetings, with Members of Parliament from both sides of government, were opportune for Latrobe City representatives to advocate for a ‘Strength Led Transition’ to a new economy not dependent on coal-fired electricity production, while drawing on the City’s strengths.

Latrobe City Mayor, Cr Sharon Gibson said, "We discussed with key players the need for a considered and whole of government approach to support the ongoing transition of the Latrobe City community," Latrobe City has been the powerhouse and facilitator of economic success for communities and industries across Victoria and Australia for decades.

Seeking assists for the region

Council representatives spoke to both sides of government looking for unified support to create the next phase of the region’s history and prosperity. It is key that a bipartisan approach is achieved, thus ensuring a long-term solution that will traverse potential elections.

Cr Gibson said while Energy Australia gave the community seven years’ notice of the Yallourn closure, she said that time would pass quickly. "We need to hit the ground running. We have no time to waste. The Deputy Mayor and myself took the opportunity to impress on the representatives in Canberra the need to consider how they can assist our region to overcome the challenges we have in front of us," Cr Gibson said.

Latrobe City needs to be supported

Latrobe City Mayor, Cr Sharon Gibson said, "For over 100 years the Latrobe Valley community has ensured that Victoria’s lights have shone brightly, and the region has also enabled manufacturing and industry in this state through reliable base load energy. It is only fair that the communities of Latrobe City are supported. It is not much to ask given the role our region has played in the prosperity of the state and indeed, the country."


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