Can we improve inclusiveness in the clean energy workforce?  

Have you ever wondered how inclusive the clean energy workforce is – or could be?  

Australia is now firmly in the implementation phase of the energy transition, with more and more employment opportunities in the clean energy workforce. In fact, nearly half a million workers are projected to be needed to reach Australia’s 2030 renewable energy target alone.  

The Next Economy is working with a range of stakeholders to explore how to expand the renewable energy workforce to include people who often face systemic barriers to employment. Specifically, in regions with growing demands for workers in clean energy. 

The Inclusive Clean Energy Workforce (ICEW) project aims to ignite discussion about how we can work together to enhance diversity, equity and inclusion.  

Our current discussion paper captures pivotal themes and insights drawn from a desktop review of literature and interviews with stakeholders across the clean energy sector, social services and employment sectors. 

In mid-July 2024, we’re hosting a range of workshops to get feedback on this initial piece of work and to dive deeper into opportunities and practical strategies to enhance diversity, equity and inclusion in the clean energy workforce.   

Opportunities and insights will be captured and shared in a series of sector resources and webinars in the second half of 2024.    

Early findings and key points:

  • Every Australian deserves access to the benefits of clean energy development, including new and existing jobs required for the workforce 
  • The current clean energy sector can improve on diversity, equity and inclusion despite already outperforming other energy sectors including coal and gas 
  • Greater diversity, equity and inclusion not only improves outcomes for individuals, but also can for companies, communities, the sector and the economy 
  • From access to training and education to workplace culture characteristics, there are several systemic, cultural and broader factors and barriers marginalised groups face accessing jobs in the clean energy workforce 
  • Working together, stakeholders from industry, education and training, and civil society can enhance diversity, equity and inclusion in the clean energy workforce 

If you’re interested in finding out more, or want to share your insights with us, please contact Jacqui Bell.  

We work with communities, governments and industry to build regional economies that are climate safe, regenerative and socially just.

We rely on contributions from generous foundations and individuals to do what we do. If you like to contribute to a fair and resilient Australia, support our work today.

We are a registered charity with the ACNC and accept tax deductible donations through the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal.