Albo’s big promises for Queensland
COAL mining and bringing manufacturing jobs back to Australia will be key to Federal Labor going forward, Opposition leader Anthony Albanese will reveal in his biggest speech since taking the top job.
Steering the party back to its traditional working-class roots, Mr Albanese will unveil a plan on Tuesday to keep jobs local while still looking after the environment.
Repositioning the party after its devastating election campaign, which was criticised under Bill Shorten for scaring blue-collar workers with its climate policies, he will instead push for Australia to harness a renewable energy economy to create jobs.
It includes ramping up metallurgical coal and gas exports, as well as creating a lithium battery manufacturing and hydrogen producing industries in the country.
He will also take a swipe at the former Newman Government for exporting train manufacturing jobs from Maryborough to India, saying traditional manufacturing jobs should be kept local.
Mr Albanese will say that the world was "decarbonising", but that Australia could position itself to remain an "energy exporting superpower" while also creating a new manufacturing boom.
"Australia can be the land of cheap and endless energy - energy that could power generations of metal manufacturing and other energy intensive manufacturing industries," he will say.
"The road to a low-carbon future can be paved with hundreds of thousands of clean energy jobs, as well as supporting traditional jobs, including coal mining."
He will say Australia should be 15.5 million tonnes of metallurgical coal, used for making steel, is forecast to be needed to deliver the exported growth in wind power to 2030.
"This is the equivalent of three years output from the Moranbah North coking coal mine in Queensland," the Opposition leader will say.
There will also be a focus on new industries, like increasing mining for rare metals used in batteries and fast-charging electric car stations.
While Australia currently mines and exports the metals, before buying back the finished products, Mr Albanese will say there will be economic advantages in creating new manufacturing jobs here.
"Not only is Australia in a position to build the batteries, Brisbane-based company, Tritium, has developed and is already exporting the technology to recharge them," he will say.
"Their charging stations are the fastest in the world, and are fuelling the shift to electric vehicles in Europe."
The speech makes no direct reference to thermal coal, used in power plants and currently making up slightly more than half Australia's coal exports by volume.