The Australian Greens will offer a ten-year jobs guarantee for coal workers under an ambitious $19 billion election commitment, which it says will ease Australia’s transition from fossil fuels to cleaner industries
The Greens’ plan, unveiled on Friday, would provide a wage subsidy for coal workers moving into new sectors – as much as half their current wages – along with a commitment of $2.8 billion in funding to support businesses create and grow new low emissions industries.
“Employers outside of the coal, oil and gas sector would be eligible for a wage subsidy equal to 50 per cent of a full time worker in the coal mining sector,” the plan says.
“The employee must receive a wage at least equal to the amount they received in their previous coal job for the employer to be eligible for the wage subsidy.”
“The guarantee would operate for ten years from leaving employment, but for workers over 55, it would be available for up to 12 years, until they reach retirement age.”
Announcing the plan from Newcastle, Greens leader Adam Bandt said there was a growing urgency for governments to put in place plans to support coal workers following events like Origin Energy’s plans to accelerate the closure of the Eraring Power Station.