Fourth 2035 Climate Initiative roundtable



Around 40 state and federal government officials, investors, and leaders representing businesses and workers in the real economy met for the fourth iteration of the 2035 Climate Initiative roundtable on Wednesday 1st November.

This time, the discussion focused on place-based decarbonisation and the opportunities and challenges of creating industrial clusters.

Session 1

The first session highlighted the importance of place in supporting industrial regions with strong fossil fuel industry exposures to decarbonise their economies.

Participants spoke of experiences in regions as diverse as the Pilbara, the Latrobe Valley, and the Illawarra. Participants reflected on the need to consider the unique strengths, limitations, and histories of each place in industrial transformation, the key roles that different levels of government can play in coordinating robust responses, and the need to understand the broader context in which regional transformation is occurring.

Also stressed was the importance of listening to local voices, through forums and platforms that are fit-for-purpose, and of taking a strength-based lens rather than deficit-based lens to working with regions.

Session 2

The second section then focused on what needs to be done to catalyse and accelerate place-based industrial decarbonisation over the next decade. Participants once again spoke of the importance of context: this time, in terms of ensuring that energy policies are aligned with industrial and regional policies as well as employment frameworks.

Governments can work to bring disparate elements of place-based decarbonisation policies together into cohesive packages, drawing on industry and communities to understand their needs.

Participants also reflected on the tension between needing to listen to local voices and the ask for national coordination, with suggestions that policies could be general and then tailored for regions, and that communities could be consulted to make processes just rather than to determine the direction of the nation.