The Hunter chapter evocatively captures the strengths, beauty and history our remarkable region and draws on these to paint a picture of the future that is dramatically different from our present, but seems very near and very possible.
The five case studies examined in the Hunter are Zero Emissions Vehicles, Clean Steel, Housing Retrofits, Land Use and Fly Ash Reuse. Together these industries and initiatives could create 50,000 jobs in our region. And these jobs also bring broader community, environmental and social benefits.
Housing retrofits will make people’s homes more resilient to the heat of climate change and less susceptible to cold. Land use will rehabilitate mine sites, restore biodiversity, transpiration and soil moisture and employ 200 Indigenous land and water rangers across the catchment area. Reuse of fly ash from the huge ash dams at the edge of Lake Macquarie will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and remove a damaging source of heavy metal contamination in the beloved Lake. An ambitious program to renew Newcastle’s steel-making industry with renewable hydrogen steel could capture 6.5% of the global steel market and create 10,000 manufacturing jobs could be created in the region in the long term. If Transport for NSW awarded its Zero Emission Buses contract to Hunter manufacturers, existing manufacturing prowess could expand to reduce diesel pollution and stimulate further spin-off industries.