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Clean energy apprenticeships program expanded

clean energy

The Federal Government has announced an expansion of the New Energy Apprenticeships Program, aimed at encouraging more people to pursue careers in clean energy sectors.

Minister for Skills and Training, Brendan O’Connor, said the program is designed to address acute skills shortages and encourage more people to pursue trades in clean energy sectors.

“This is a great opportunity for Australians to gain a trade whilst accessing government incentives, as well as doing something tangible for the environment,” he said.

“We are constantly monitoring our programs and listening to industry to understand what they need to make access to programs.”

The program, which provides incentives of up to $10,000 to apprentices, will be broadened from 1 June to include more industries and occupations.

The changes come after industry consultations highlighted the need for a more practical approach to support key sectors transitioning to clean energy and new technology.

The program will now include sectors like housing construction, automotive, and advanced manufacturing, and will no longer require apprentices to work solely on clean energy projects.

The expansion will also cover new areas such as designing and constructing hydroelectricity, solar and battery installations, and electric vehicle maintenance. This will help address skills shortages and support the government’s goals of a net zero economy and a “Future Made in Australia”.

Federal Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Chris Bowen, added that the program will help ensure workers can capitalise on the clean energy transformation and are skilled to take part in the renewable energy and electric vehicle sectors.

“The world’s climate emergency is Australia’s jobs opportunity,” he said.

The program has already seen over 2210 apprentices sign up since its launch last year, and the expansion is expected to increase the skilled workforce in clean energy related skills, particularly in residential energy efficiency.

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