The town of Collie and its coal industries has kept the lights on in WA for as long as most people can remember, but as the world responds to climate change and the age of reliable renewable energy gathers pace, this Southwest regional center is at a crossroads.
This forum will explore international examples where regional economic centers reliant on fossil fuel industries have been renewed and revitalised through a transition to renewable energy.
Learnings from one of the world’s leading experts on planning and infrastructure development for renewable energy will be combined with local knowledge and research to explore the potential and pathway for a renewable energy transition in Collie in Western Australia.
Professor Peter Droege, University of Liechtenstein
Prof Peter Droege and the Liechtenstein Institute for Strategic Development pursue post carbon regions with local communities and regional governments. Peter is in Perth to share insight into his current initiative of devising structural change in one of Europe's largest brown coal mining regions, drawing encouragement and insight from similar developments elsewhere. The obvious need and opportunity for Collie to make a similar journey will be the focus for discussion.
Peter Droege has been an academic in Australia (Newcastle and Sydney universities), America (MIT), Japan (Uni of Tokyo) and now at University of Liechtenstein. He has books on The Renewable City (2006), Urban Energy Transition (2008), 100% Renewable (2012) and has been a powerful leader of academic and policy-based research on how cities and regions can create good economic outcomes by moving to renewables.
Sustainable Energy Now (SEN)
Western Australian research and advocacy group SEN has developed a ground-breaking model to examine pathways and opportunities for renewable energy uptake in the Southwest Interconnected System. Ben Rose from SEN will present some recent findings from this model, with a focus on jobs and economic development opportunities for Collie over the next decade.