Like many others, McCartney saw opportunity in WA’s wealth of minerals needed for the move away from fossil fuels such as lithium for car and power grid batteries.
“Once upon a time, we turned big rocks into little rocks and sold them to someone else,” McCartney said, calling for more minerals to undergoing value-adding processing here before being exported.
Mineral Resources managing director Chris Ellison has long wanted to build lithium hydroxide refineries in his home state rather than export unprocessed spodumene from his mines.
However, on Thursday Ellison said high construction costs in WA meant the investment would not stack up financially without significant government support that he did not expect to appear.
McCartney said he wanted the state government – financially strong on the back of iron ore revenue – to launch a large-scale green industry attraction fund.
“There’s a race around the world to try and get green industries into their countries, billions of dollars at play, and the state needs to invest heavily to ensure that we can get into,” he said.
He pointed to the federal government’s $15 billion National Reconstruction Fund, launched a year ago to finance projects that diversify the economy, as a model for the Cook government to follow.
With coal’s exit from the WA economy imminent, McCartney said it was not too early to start developing a transition plan for the gas sector that he expects would involve supporting the development of a green steel industry.
Start the day with a summary of the day’s most important and interesting stories, analysis and insights. Sign up for our Morning Edition newsletter.
(The following story may or may not have been edited by NEUSCORP.COM and was generated automatically from a Syndicated Feed. NEUSCORP.COM also bears no responsibility or liability for the content.)