Last week, the solar industry secured a significant victory against bad policy when the Supreme Court of Queensland ruled that the State Government’s regulation requiring only licensed electrical workers to locate, mount and fix panels, was invalid.
Justice Bradley found that the hastily introduced regulation was beyond the powers of the Electrical Safety Act. (The Act specifically states that the ‘locating, mounting and fixing of electrical equipment’ is not electrical work.)
This is a great outcome for the clean energy transition in Queensland, for the industry which stands to save tens of millions of dollars in unnecessary costs, and for regional and rural communities, who would have missed out on hundreds if not thousands of local jobs over the coming decade – without any demonstrable safety benefit.
It is very disappointing that the industry ever had to take legal action to challenge this regulation. We have repeatedly called on the Minister to sit down with our sector to discuss their concerns, so that we can find an alternative and less costly way forward for achieving our shared safety aims.
It is an offer that we have restated to the Government even now as they have announced their intention to appeal the judgement. The appeal will be heard this Friday 7 June. In the meantime, we understand that the Government no longer intends to apply for a stay of the Supreme Court’s decision.
I would like to acknowledge the many members who contributed their time, expertise and resources in our campaign – this outcome would not have been possible without their efforts.