Shadow Minister for Education and Training, the Hon.Tanya Plibersek MP, says investment in cheaper, cleaner renewable energy is a “no brainer” as we begin our COVID-19 recovery.
Talking to On the Job with Francis Leach & Sally Rugg, Plibersek explained, “We’ve got another opportunity going into the next century of driving jobs and growth and national wealth by being a renewable energy superpower.”
“We’ve got all of the building blocks of doing that, this is not either or. It’s certainly not jobs or environment, as some people would have you believe. We can absolutely do both.”
A sustainably led economic recovery is just one of the ideas outlined in Plibersek’s new book, Upturn: A better normal after COVID-19. The book proposes a bold vision for a fairer Australia post the pandemic, featuring essays from some of Australia’s most interesting thinkers, including ACTU secretary Sally McManus.
Plibersek was inspired to compile Upturn not just in response to the devasting effect of the pandemic, but also from the quick and effective social change that occurred in response.
She sees the next stage of recovery as an opportunity to build on this spirit, asking, “Are we content with how things were, or are we going to take this opportunity of huge dislocation and change to make things better?”
At the core of Plibersek’s vision for a “better normal”, is a future with secure, well paid jobs.
“It has to be jobs that are secure with decent paying conditions.
“It has to be rebooting our social support services, our health, our education, early childhood education, age care, and disability support services.
“It has to be investment in better cities and regions, building things…and making sure that the jobs that come out of that rebuilding…are secure jobs with decent pay and conditions.”