Latrobe City Council announce economic transition plan

File photograph



LATROBE City Council has released their economic transition plan.

The Latrobe Valley is undergoing a critical economic transition with a shift towards a more sustainable and diverse local economy.

For more than 100 years, the region has been well known as a brown coal energy heartland, providing the state’s power. But as the world pushes for cleaner energy to address the issue of climate change, owners and operators of the region’s coal-fired power stations and mines have announced their closure dates.

Due to the confirmation of these closure dates, with the 2028 closure of the Yallourn Power Station and the recently announced early closure of Loy Yang in 2035, Latrobe City Council developed ‘Our Transition’ plan, which seeks to build on regional strength’s and aims to support the region’s economic transition and transformation.

The plan supports the equitable diversification of Latrobe City’s economic base as it transitions towards a low-emission future. Council aims to do this by attracting investment, upskilling to meet needs, skilled workforce promotion, understanding future job opportunities, providing business support and promoting Latrobe City.

Latrobe City Mayor, Cr Kellie O’Callaghan, said Latrobe’s approach to transition reflects council plan’s key actions and performance measures in an ever-changing environment.

“We are working to be remembered as the region that gets transition right, and I believe that we are indeed on the right path,” the mayor said.

Council has already enacted their transition plan actions by advocating for the state government support to pursue geothermal and hydrogen energy opportunities. Latrobe City will also work with the reformed SEC to maximise the $1 billion investment in renewables to deliver local investment, procurement, and jobs.

“Council has an important role to play in transitioning and securing the region’s economic future while ensuring the voice of the community is heard,” Cr O’Callaghan added.

“Our work will continue to amplify the depth of insights shared by our community in developing the Council Plan 2021-2025, ensuring we remain committed to the bright and prosperous future for our community.

“Council plays a critical leadership role in advocating for both public and private investment to support community aspirations.”

In addition, council will advocate for:

The continued health and well-being of the Valley region to increase liveability alongside education and training programs to create the skills base needed for our future economy;

The development of Latrobe Regional Airport, repositioning it as the Victorian Centre for Advanced Air Mobility (AMM);

The confirmation of state and federal government commitment to repurposing the mines,

The increase of significant investment in recycling and re-manufacturing, and;

Council will campaign for the progress of the Centre for Australian Automotive Futures (CAAF), an innovation centre for future automotive technologies.

“We know that there is not one solution – it will take diversity of technology and industries to get us to where we want to be,” Cr O’Callaghan said.

“The region’s economic transition is an exciting development for both businesses and residents. It represents a shift towards a more sustainable and diverse economy, with opportunities for growth and innovation in a range of sectors.

“In delivering our plan, we will take a collaborative approach to ensure we can transition and transform our city. A successful transition must be nurtured by all levels of government and we welcome the support of government to drive our economic and structural transition.”