MEDIA RELEASE | Engineers Australia calls for climate change action ahead of WA election

“While engineers have always designed for the future, climate change presents us with an increasingly urgent future situation that requires even greater consideration, knowledge and planning,” said Engineers Australia’s General Manager – WA, Susan Kreemer Pickford.
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Engineers Australia has today released its election position statement, urging the next WA government to commit to policy that embeds climate resilience. 

“While engineers have always designed for the future, climate change presents us with an increasingly urgent future situation that requires even greater consideration, knowledge and planning,” said Engineers Australia’s General Manager – WA, Susan Kreemer Pickford.

Engineers Australia’s election position statement– developed through consultation with members and industry – highlights the crucial role engineers will play in addressing future challenges.

“The outputs of engineering will play a vital role not only in developing resilience in a new climate, but also in proactively addressing the causes and impacts of climate change as a significant ecological, social and economic risk,” Ms Kreemer Pickford said.

The engineering peak body is also calling for increased building engineering capacity and confidence through the appointment of a Chief Engineer, and the registration of engineers across all industries.  

“Now, more than ever, we need engineers to find creative solutions and we look forward to working with the next government to help build a resilient and prosperous WA.”


Engineers Australia election priorities

Energy and climate change

Engineers Australia believes it is essential that Western Australia drives competitive advantage, economic growth and long-term resilience and sustainability through energy policy to meet the state’s climate action commitments. 

The energy policy must be developed to: 

  • Pursue an energy future that maximises the state’s abundant natural advantages for new energy solutions such as hydrogen for domestic use, export and as a manufacturing input.
  • Understand and plan for the future of energy production and usage as the state works towards its goal of net zero emissions by 2050. 
  • Provide a holistic technical approach to the development of the State-wide electricity system to ensure reliability, adaptability, and minimum practical cost.
  • Set renewable energy targets and pursue a net zero carbon energy future for the state.
  • Develop infrastructure to support new energy transportation, including electric and hydrogen vehicles.
  • Develop strategies to maximise state competitive advantage in natural gas, hydrogen technologies, production and export.
     

Registration of all practicing engineers in WA

Engineers Australia believes registration of engineers is essential to ensure the community has confidence in engineering work and to underpin the state’s resources, building and infrastructure reputation.

Registration: 

  • Establishes a standard that the public and government can use to provide confidence that an engineer has the qualifications and experience to practice independently. 
  • Demonstrates that an engineer possesses the skills and standing to be competitive in the global market. 
  • Assists with ensuring accountability of engineers and provides ongoing validation of competency and standards. 

The next Government needs to take further action:

  • Engineers Australia supports legislation in Western Australia to make it a requirement that engineers be registered across all industries. A similar scheme exists in Queensland and legislation is pending in Victoria. 


Chief Engineer and government access to engineering advice 

The Western Australia government and government entities should have access to the best standard of independent engineering advice and capability. State infrastructure planning, responding to crises and policy development benefit from the engineering perspective.

A government Chief Engineer for Western Australia appointed by the Premier is essential. 

The Chief Engineer will:

  • Provide advice on engineering intensive policies and projects.  
  • Provide advice on policies and programs that foster innovation.  
  • Assist government develop industry policies and programs that will drive economic growth and boost productivity. 


Ends.

NOTE TO EDITORS:    

Engineers Australia’s General Manager – WA, Susan Kreemer Pickford, is available for further comment. 
Lisa McKoy | National Media Manager I [email protected] | Phone: 0468 366 691