Energy survey says…

A SURVEY has found support for the Victorian Government to fund diversifying the Latrobe Valley community away from coal-fired energy.

Environmental campaign organisation Friends of the Earth found 69.5 per cent of respondents recognised the need in their ReachTEL survey of 1137 people.

The non-profit’s campaigns coordinator Cam Walker said the question tested if people understood government needed to look after the Latrobe Valley and create new jobs before power station closures.

The survey captured a state-wide demographic, including a cross section of gender, age and those from metropolitan and regional areas.

Mr Walker recognised Premier Daniel Andrew’s $40 million towards the Latrobe Valley’s “transition” was a good start, but said more would be needed in upcoming budgets.

He said FOE would be crowdfunding ideas about economic diversification in the Valley before the next state budget in May.

A total of 68.2 per cent of respondents also agreed to the statement that Victoria needed to transition its energy use from coal to 100 per cent renewables as a “matter of urgency”.

Mr Walker said it was significant that 78.6 per cent of Australian Labor Party voters and some 51.2 per cent of Liberal voters supported the statement.

“There’s even support among Coalition voters after what happened when they were in power and gutting everything in terms of climate,” he said.