Moves to scrap job-killing solar laws

THE State Opposition has moved to scrap Labor's contentious solar laws that could force hundreds of labourers out of jobs.

Shadow energy spokesman Michael Hart today moved a disallowance motion regarding the new regulations that came into effect yesterday.

It comes after the Clean Energy Council claimed solar businesses across the state had been asking labourers to "down tools" in recent days.

"This is just another thought-bubble from Annastacia Palaszczuk and her embattled Minister Grace Grace," Mr Hart said.

"The Palaszczuk Labor Government's plan will hurt investment, reduce jobs and drive up electricity bills.

"We are all about safety but these new regulations are just another unnecessary cost for Queenslanders."

The new laws allow only licensed electricians to mount, locate, fix or remove solar panels on projects of 100kW or greater.

The Courier-Mail revealed last month that hundreds of labourers could lose their jobs because projects would need to hire licensed electricians.

Mr Hart claimed the cost to build a solar farm could soar by 20 per cent.

CEC energy generation director Anna Freeman yesterday said the new regulation had been brought in with little consultation and warning.

"Across Queensland in the last few days, businesses have been asking labourers to down tools and scrambling to source electricians to take over the straightforward task of panel mounting," she said.

"The affected workers were trained, experienced and entirely capable of doing the mechanical tasks of mounting unconnected solar panels.

"The mounting of electrical equipment is not even classed as electrical work under the state Electrical Safety Act (2002) and it could easily be performed by local labourers and trades assistants as it has to date."

The motion will be debated in Parliament tonight.



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