In an age where we are seeing and feeling the effects of human-induced climate change more and more, investment in renewable energy generation is more crucial than ever.
Furthermore, with a number of Victorians out of work and struggling to find new employment, especially in the skilled manufacturing sector, anything which promotes and grows employment is very welcome.
That is why I am so pleased to see Keppel Prince Engineering down in Portland creating more jobs in western Victoria in wind turbine manufacturing, following its success as a tenderer to build 35 wind turbines for the Ararat wind farm. But the good news does not stop there.
More work has been secured recently with Keppel Prince to manufacture towers for a wind farm at Waterloo in South Australia, whilst talks continue between the New South Wales government and Keppel Prince for the wind farm at Glen Innes.
In late 2014 Keppel Prince could not hang on any longer and was forced to lay off 85 workers due to the previous government’s anti-wind farm regulations and a federal coalition that gutted the renewable energy target.
In stark contrast, the Andrews Labor government is committed to renewables with its Renewable Energy Roadmap, which includes $200 million of new investments in renewable energy.
With that commitment, Keppel Prince and other renewable energy manufacturers now have the certainty to grow their workforces, and that is exactly what we are seeing. Since Labor has come to power 55 new jobs have been created at Keppel Prince, with a further 60 expected by the middle of the year. This is very welcome news and a real shot in the arm for the Portland community.