A decade of opportunity - launch of Gladstone Region's Economic Transition 10-year Roadmap

In an Australian first, Gladstone Regional Council has today launched its 10-year economic transition roadmap to support and guide Queensland’s industrial capital to become a renewable energy superpower. The roadmap will see the region in prime position to respond to once-in-a-generation changes in the energy sector. 

Developed in partnership with regional economic development agency, The Next Economy, the detailed plan is a result of two years of research and extensive engagement involving 220 community, government and industry stakeholders. This included First Nations people, energy system workers, unions and educational institutions. 

The Gladstone Region Economic Transition Roadmap will guide the council on what is required to adapt to a rapidly changing energy sector and support a positive economic transition for its community over the next 10 years. Key themes include: energy security and affordability; establishing a viable hydrogen industry; diversifying the economy; supporting and developing the local workforce; capturing the community benefits and protecting land and water resources.

The Gladstone region is facing a major economic transformation as industries grapple with the decarbonisation of the global economy. The challenges facing the region, and therefore the Gladstone Regional Council, arise from the need to manage the shift away from fossil fuels and manage the impacts associated with new energy industries.

Matt Burnett, Mayor Gladstone Region Mayor said: “Council’s decision to endorse the roadmap is an exciting moment for the region’s future. It places us in pole position to capitalise on the economic opportunities of new energy industries, while also ensuring our region maintains its industrial heritage and community vitality in a new transitioned economy.

“Council understands how vital it is to continue working with our communities and stakeholders to diversify the region’s economy for long term prosperity. This roadmap helps us determine what needs to be done to realise this vision.”

He reflected that the council wanted to lead the way and determine the region’s future and enlisted the help of The Next Economy to work through the stakeholder engagement process.

Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King said: “The Australian Government is proud to support initiatives like the Gladstone Region Economic Transition Roadmap which help Australia’s regions to thrive.”

“This roadmap is a great example of successful collaboration between government, industry and community, and demonstrates the Australian Government’s commitment to investing in partnership with regional communities to deliver the best outcome for regional Australians now and into the future.”

Dr Amanda Cahill, Chief Executive Officer, The Next Economy said: “This project is the first of its kind in Australia using an inclusive and interactive planning process to engage such a diverse group of stakeholders to tackle the challenges and opportunities of energy transition. The roadmap will enable Gladstone Regional Council to lead and work with industry, government and the community to navigate changes on the horizon that directly impact the local economy. 

“The Gladstone Region is particularly well positioned to take advantage of new economic opportunities as we shift to new energy solutions, but we also need to plan ahead to manage the potential impacts on the regional economy, community and the environment. We can shape these in ways that benefit all three.”

The Gladstone Regional Council initiative is delivered in partnership with The Next Economy and is made possible with $46,000 in funding from the Australian Government.

To download a copy of the full Roadmap and a summary report please visit: www.gladstone.qld.gov.au/economic-information