Community Energy Congress wrap-up


HERE at the ATA we are just getting our feet back on the ground after the inspirational Community Energy Congress. More than 500 people attended the two days of the congress in Melbourne, hearing international speakers, sharing Australian success stories and learning about the tools and resources available to community groups for their projects. There was time for groups to plan and network so that the congress was an opportunity to make connections and start putting projects into action. It even felt like there were partnerships and deals forming in the morning and afternoon tea breaks!

For me the highlight of the event was the formation of the First Nations Renewable Energy Alliance by the Aboriginal representatives at the congress. Fred Hooper, of the Murrawarri Nation, highlighted the massive change of direction: “This congress has opened our eyes.” The power of people to galvanise and make an immediate impact was clear. “What this congress has given us is a chance to get those people in one place and build something for us, in partnership with all of you in the audience today.”

Ghillar Michael Anderson, of the Euahylia Nation, said the group had already established a steering committee. “Taking ownership of energy security is a huge step forward for our First People. It is a big leap towards tackling poverty and disenchantment. The Alliance is the first step to changing the system.”

The ATA is proud to have helped bring the Australian and Canadian First Nation leaders to the congress and we look forward to working with the Alliance for climate justice.

Donna Luckman