28/11/2014 - 15:44

Climate policy prompts SEA exit

28/11/2014 - 15:44

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Western Australia’s clean energy sector is undergoing a shakeup after the state’s premier lobbying organisation announced it was closing and would be replaced by a WA chapter of the Clean Energy Council.

Climate policy prompts SEA exit
SEA chief executive Dermot Costello. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Western Australia’s clean energy sector is undergoing a shakeup after the state’s premier lobbying organisation announced it was closing and would be replaced by a WA chapter of the Clean Energy Council.

The Perth-based Sustainable Energy Association of Australia announced today it was winding up with immediate effect, citing falling membership and revenue following changes in government policy and economic factors.

The association, which until September was headed by Kirsten Rose - who left to become Australian Institute of Company Directors WA state manager - is now seeking feedback on a proposal on how best the CEC can represent WA’s clean energy industry.

In a statement, the CEC said WA’s clean energy sector had unique characteristics including its energy market (which is currently under review), geographic differences and its political environment.

SEA chief executive Dermot Costello and chair Mike Laughton-Smith said in a statement the clean energy sector was at a critical point and needed to have a united voice at state and federal levels.

The CEC WA sub division will aim to lobby and engage media to promote WA as an investment opportunity in the clean tech sector, as well as undertaking analysis of WA policy and technical issues and facilitating local forums.

CEC WA is expected to have a WA-based committee and business manager and receive operational, management and governance support from the national body.

“The relationship with the CEC should be seen as a win-win situation for all WA companies and stakeholders,” Mr Laughton-Smith said.

“A strong, unified independent voice for Western Australia remains, which is now supported and resources by the CEC, providing a unified sector voice at a federal level.”

Mr Costello said winding up the SEA was disappointing but he saw it as a major opportunity for the clean energy industry in WA.

“I would just like to emphasise the positives,” he said.

“From the proverbial ashes of the SEA we will strive to create a new, stronger body which the entire state, irrelevant of your area of interest within clean energy, can relate to, leverage off, and really benefit from over the coming weeks, months and years.”

 

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