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News Service 111 – Online jobs small increase, unemployment down, Female careers showcase, NSW Gov review of electrical laws, ASQA issues alert to providers, Merging VET & HE, Apprentice taskforce established, Death notice to dodgy RTOs, Championing gender equality, Electrical safety – switch off power, Electrical checking & testing, Lighting changes, Powerline injury, Electrician stripped of registration, Worker jailed after dropping concrete on apprentice, SafeWork NSW construction update, NSW SmallBizMonth, Cost-benefit solar with battery, EV wave, Transgrid’s major transmission work

uensw  > Industry News, News headlines >  News Service 111 – Online jobs small increase, unemployment down, Female careers showcase, NSW Gov review of electrical laws, ASQA issues alert to providers, Merging VET & HE, Apprentice taskforce established, Death notice to dodgy RTOs, Championing gender equality, Electrical safety – switch off power, Electrical checking & testing, Lighting changes, Powerline injury, Electrician stripped of registration, Worker jailed after dropping concrete on apprentice, SafeWork NSW construction update, NSW SmallBizMonth, Cost-benefit solar with battery, EV wave, Transgrid’s major transmission work

Download a PDF version of the News Service 111


The National Skills Commission (NSC) released on the 9th of November 2022, the October 2022 Internet Vacancy Index (IVI) report showing that job advertisements increased by 0.5% (or 1,400 job ads) in October 2022 to stand at 285,700.

The report states, “Recruitment activity increased across all states and territories during October 2022, except for Victoria (down by 3.2% or 2,600 job ads) and New South Wales (down by 0.3% or 260 job ads).

The strongest growth was recorded in Queensland, where recruitment activity increased by 7.7% (or 4,400 job ads), followed by Western Australia (up by 6.8% or 2,000 job ads) and the Australian Capital Territory (up by 5.5% or 430 job ads).

There has been strong growth in recruitment activity in the last twelve months with job advertisements 30,000 (or 11.7%) higher than October 2021.

In comparison to levels of recruitment activity observed prior to the COVID-19 pandemic*, online job advertisements are up by 69.8% (117,400 job ads). This growth is reflected across all jurisdictions, with increases ranging from 43.7% (2,500 job ads) in the ACT to 112.3% (2,000 job ads) in Tasmania.

The detailed release of the Internet Vacancy Index (IVI), including occupational, regional and skill level data, will be available on Wednesday 23 November 2022.”



The National Skills Commission (NSC) also released, on the 11th of November 2022, the June quarter 2022 Small Area Labour Markets (SALM) estimates. 

SALM presents estimates of unemployment and the unemployment rate at the Statistical Area Level 2 (SA2) and Local Government Area (LGA) levels.  “Statistical Areas Level 2 (SA2) are medium-sized general purpose areas built up from whole Statistical Areas Level 1. Their purpose is to represent a community that interacts together socially and economically[1].”

The NSC Report states, “The latest results show there has been a significant increase in the number of SA2s with an unemployment rate of less than 5% (from 937 to 1,536 over the past year). The number of SA2s with an unemployment rate of 10% or higher has also fallen considerably (from 259 to 104). These results reflect the strong recovery in labour market conditions that has occurred since the end of the 2021 COVID-19 related lockdowns.

When comparing SALM data over the year, it is important to note that the June quarter 2021 smoothed figures (an average of the 12 months to the last month of the quarter) include part of the period of softer labour market conditions that occurred after Australia’s initial lockdown during the first wave of COVID-19.

While the June quarter 2022 figures cover the lockdowns associated with the 2021 COVID-19 outbreaks in south-eastern Australia in the second half of 2021, the negative impact of these lockdowns on the labour market was neither as severe nor as widespread as that associated with the initial wave of COVID-19.

The data also shows that around 9 in 10 SA2s (or 92.2%) recorded a decrease in their unemployment rate over the year to the June quarter 2022, the largest proportion recorded since the start of the series. SA2s located in capital cities were more likely to record a fall in their unemployment rate over the year than those outside capital cities (96% compared with 87%).”



The Agrifood and Electrotechnology ITAB’s will host FREE showcase days for Manufacturing, Agrifood and Electrotechnology (MAE) industries in partnership with the National Vegetable Protected Cropping Centre and Essential Energy.

An exclusive event for female participants aged 16-64, careers advisors & influencers.  You’ll see industry at work, gain hands on experience and develop a sense of the many jobs available for consideration.

SYDNEY:Held on location, Building S40, Horticulture Road, Hawkesbury Campus, Western Sydney University, Richmond NSW

Attendees will have the opportunity to:

  • meet and talk with female industry leaders involved in protected cropping, beekeeping, pollination, energy and electrotechnology industries
  • gain hands-on experience
  • access the latest career information & learn more about rewarding occupations
  • ask questions and have them answered by industry experts
  • register and reserve a place for obligation free opportunities to do work experience with local MAE industries
  • free networking lunch

Showcase day participants numbers are limited and registrations are essential.

WHEN: Wednesday, 7 December 2022, 9:30 am to 2.00pm

Download a copy of the flyer here: MAE SYDNEY FLYER


Check for bus access and support.

For more information contact Melissa by email or call 0421830056; or visit the agrifooditab website


The NSW Government has several reviews underway which encompass issues of electrical licencing, safe electrical work, supervision of apprentices and trades assistance, continuous profession development (CPD) for licenced occupations, updated enforcement provisions and more. 

In relation to the first two below, government is seeking feedback to inform prospective legislative changes to current arrangements, from the public and stakeholders.  The opportunity for you to have your say will soon close.  It is important that you consider what the proposed changes might mean to your current work practices and what eligibility and maintenance of competency requirements will be decided with respect the classes of specialist electrical licensing.

These are:

The review aims to create a new foundation for construction by:
– improving safety, accountability and transparency;
– ensuring high-quality design, construction and maintenance;
– modernising and simplifying building legislation.

Related documents for the review process include:
– Home Building Act (HBA) Review – inc. electrical licensing and PD – CLICK HERE

– Draft supervision practice standards for the electrical industry – electrical apprentices and trades assistants – CLICK HERE FOR PRACTICE STANDARDS
Feedback closes Friday, 25 November 2022
The main proposals in the discussion paper include:
– changes to definitions such as electrical and gasfitting work
– expansion of the scope of the Act to capture hydrogen gas and appliances
– certification of electrical articlestransfer of autogas installation for vehicles to the Motor Dealers and Repairers Act 2013
– introduction of the Type A and Type B framework for regulating gas appliances in NSW
– changes to notification requirements for serious electrical or gas accidents
– strengthened compliance and enforcement to improve consumer safety
– improved ways of sharing information with industry.
Feedback closes Monday, 5 December 2022.
Retired Supreme Court Judge to Carry out Review of SafeWork NSW – CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION

The Review will examine SafeWork NSW’s performance of its regulatory functions (including educational functions) under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (NSW).
– Terms of Reference – Independent Review of SafeWork NSW – CLICK HERE FOR TERMS OF REFERENCE
– The reports will be publicly released after they are provided to the Government.
Interim Report to be provided to the responsible Minister by 31 May 2023, with a final Report to be provided by 29 November 2023

Your feedback is important and will help shape proposed changes that will be presented to Parliament for consideration according to the programmed parliamentary schedule.


The Australian Skills quality Authority (ASQA) \issued a sector alert to the provider community, on the 4th November 2022, that it has “identified international student delivery as one of the Regulatory Risk Priorities for 2022-23 and is working in partnership across government to detect and deter non-genuine providers and safeguard the integrity of the international VET market.”

The alert states, “ASQA remains alert to collusion, opportunistic or misleading behaviour by providers and their agents.

Providers delivering to overseas students are reminded of their obligations in monitoring the performance of education agents and ensuring that international students are genuine and engaged with learning.

Provider obligations

Providers delivering to overseas students are responsible for ensuring that their education agents act ethically, honestly and in the best interest of overseas students and uphold the reputation of Australia’s international education sector.

Providers are also required to monitor student progress throughout a course of study.

These obligations are set out in the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act) and the National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2018 (the National Code). Specifically, providers have a responsibility to monitor their affiliated education agents’ activities under Standard 4 of the National Code, which also requires providers to take action where an agent has not complied with their responsibilities.

Under standard 4 of the National Code, registered providers are responsible for ensuring that their education agents act ethically, honestly and in the best interest of overseas students and uphold the reputation of Australia’s international education sector.”

The alert follows revelations in a number of media stories by media outlets of women being trafficked around Australia into sex work via the immigration system.  For instance, reporters Nick McKenzie, Amelia Ballinger and Joel Tozer detailed a story in the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), on the 30 October 2022, titled, “Trafficked: Women shunted ‘like cattle’ around Australia for sex work”.  The article stated, “A global human trafficking syndicate has exploited flaws in Australian border security and the immigration system that allowed it to run a national illegal sex racket moving exploited foreign women around the country like “cattle”.

In another SMH report on the 3 November 2022 by Nick McKenzie, an article titled, “Australian colleges identified in allegedly helping women enter country to work in sex industry” states, “More than a dozen Australian education providers for overseas students have been identified as allegedly “corrupt” by state and federal investigators probing the movement of women from Asia to Australia to work in the sex industry, including at brothels linked to illegal sex rings.

Education agents are reminded by ASQA of their obligations and responsibilities to overseas students, and to uphold the reputation of Australia’s international education sector. …”

ASQA encourages anyone who has intelligence or information about unethical, dishonest or non-genuine arrangements that place students at risk and undermine confidence in quality VET is encouraged to contact ASQA by email or phone 1300 701 801.



Editor, Stephen Matchett reports in Campus Morning Mail, 14 November 2022 edition of a call from post-school policy expert, Tom Karmel from the Mackenzie Research Institute to the Productivity Commission’s five-year productivity inquiry, for a new type of post school education approach.

The article states, “Dr Karmel warns on present trends, “VET will be left as a provider of lower level training to meet short term industry needs” while “university education, with its emphasis on research and theory, will be the only game in town in the delivery of training for professional occupations.”

However the former MD of the National Centre for Vocational Education Research and present director of the Mackenzie Research Institute suggests a new type of tertiary education can “address the decline … in practice based education.”

In a submission to the Productivity Commission he proposes teaching and practice institutions, delivering certificates, diplomas and bachelor degrees to cross the different VET and HE regulation, qualification, funding and fee systems.

“We need to rejuvenate vocational education so that there is a direct pathway into higher education. We need applied universities that offer qualifications from lower level VET qualifications to bachelors and applied masters degrees,” he writes.”

The Productivity Commission’s scope of inquiry requires the Commission to “review Australia’s productivity performance and recommend an actionable roadmap to assist governments to make productivity-enhancing reforms. Each recommendation should qualitatively and quantitatively estimate the benefit of making the reform and identify an owner for the action and a timeframe in which it might occur.”



Editor Sandra Rossi reports in the 9 November 2022 edition of Climate Control News (CCN) that the Victorian government will establish an Apprenticeship Taskforce to improve the work lives of apprentices.

The article states, “The McKell Institute has welcomed the Victorian government’s decision to establish an Apprenticeship Taskforce to improve the working lives of young tradies.

In its pitch to voters ahead of the state election, Labor has announced it would establish an Apprenticeships Taskforce to make sure tradespeople are working in fair and safe environments.

It would consider ways to improve regulatory arrangements, training plans, screening processes, complaint reporting, enforcement for apprentices encountering mistreatment, and employer accountability.

A report by the McKell Institute which was released in September recommended policy makers and regulators increase the voice of Victorian apprentices in their deliberations to ensure their issues are considered and addressed.

The Institute also suggested employers should be properly held accountable for the bad on-the-job experiences of their apprentices, and have approvals revoked if they breach safety laws.

The McKell Institute CEO Michael Buckland said a taskforce would create a layer of oversight that is desperately required to improve workplace culture and safety for people starting their careers.”



The Australian Refrigeration Council (ARC) issued a press release on 11th November 2022 giving notice to RTOs, regarding the issuance of spurious qualifications to learners qualified via inappropriate recognised prior learning practices.

The Media Release states, “The ARC has issued a ‘death notice’ for dodgy RTOs that issue spurious qualifications typically based on inadequate two-day courses and inappropriate reliance on recognition of prior learning (RPL) processes.

ARC chief executive officer Glenn Evans said there had been a focus on these types of courses for a number of years, with the last of the known two-day refrigeration and air conditioning courses which once blighted the industry being been shut down more than two years ago.

“Over the years, ARC has worked in partnership with the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) to shut down these courses,” he said.

“Significantly, this means you can no longer get a Certificate II RAC qualification by attending a quickie weekend course and going through a meaningless tick-and-flick RPL process.

“Even accounting for RPL, these courses should typically involve a minimum of 360 hours.”

Mr Evans said RPL was not, and was never meant to be, a shortcut to getting a so-called quickie ‘qualification’.

“RPL is a rigorous process to verify which skills people already have,” he said.

“It assesses an individual’s competencies in great detail – competencies which may have been acquired through formal, non-formal and/or informal learning.

“The learner must submit a great deal of evidence, including referee reports, resumes, photographic and documentary evidence and interviews for every competency required.”

Mr Evans said the war against dodgy training organisations would never be over, even if at present the ARC and ASQA were winning the battle.

“It is important to remain vigilant, and we welcome industry reports of any new short courses so that we can investigate and take action,” he said.”


Visit the ARC website for more information: ARC WEBSITE


The NSW Government has released the NSW Women’s Strategy 2023-2026.  Women NSW reports in its 8 November 2022 newsletter of the release of the new Strategy.

The article states, “The NSW Women’s Strategy 2023-2026 provides a unified approach for the NSW Government and the community to improve the economic, social, physical and mental wellbeing of women and girls across NSW.

Developed in consultation with more than 2,000 women and girls from across the state, the NSW Women’s Strategy 2023-2026 is about championing gender equality and focuses on three key pillars:

  • Economic opportunity and advancement
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Participation and empowerment

These pillars will inform policies and guide investments to ensure the best outcomes for the women and girls across NSW.

New initiatives highlighted by the strategy include the Government’s $16.5 billion commitment over 10 years towards programs that improve the lives of women in NSW.”



Sean Carroll, Editor at Electrical Connection reports in the 11 November 2022 edition that Australia is set to follow European directives around the use of fluorescent lighting.

The article states, “From 1 September 2023, the EU will implement a law that condemns the use of T8 fluorescent tubes, adding to the ban on halogen lights a few years ago. Introduced in 2019/2020/EU Ecodesign requirements for light sources, Australia is likely to follow and the changes present a huge opportunity for electricians.

On top of this, there’s a second directive that aims to regulate the use of dangerous substances including the mercury found in some other lights, including various fluorescent tubes.

The fluorescent tube has been around for many decades, a staple lighting solution for residential, commercial and industrial installations that offered a cost-effective and efficient light source. But the not-so-new kid on the block, LED technology, is redefining what size and efficiency can mean today.

Explosive atmospheres like those in petrol, pharmaceutical or fertiliser plants are potentially dangerous if mixed with these substances and a prompt switch to LED technology has several benefits.

The Lighting Council of Australia (LCA) has outlined that high-pressure mercury vapour (HPMV) lamps are becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to source as many OECD countries have already ratified the Minamata Convention on Mercury (Australia followed suit in early 2022).

“This has led to natural supply shortages. Low-cost, long-life, high-quality, high-efficiency LED products have been widely available in Australia since 2016,” LCA public affairs and environmental manager Brodie Easton says.

“This follows a period of significant market transformation during which large investments by the global lighting industry were made into the development of new technology LED products for all general lighting applications.”

He adds that there are approximately 500,000 HPMV streetlights installed across Australia, with a significant proportion in Queensland and Western Australia. The transition to LEDs in some areas is still in progress and is still underway by electricians across the country.

When and if fluorescent lighting eventually becomes banned in Australia, electricians across the country will have plenty of work replacing the older lighting solutions.”



The Building and Energy Unit of the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety has alerted electrical workers in its November edition of Electrical Focus (Issue 7) to switch the power off before entering a roof space. 

The article states, “Recent tragic deaths and near misses have prompted a reminder from Building and Energy to the industry to always switch off the mains power before entering a roof space.

This follows five fatal electric shocks since 2011 in roof spaces in Perth and the South West, as well as several serious injuries from electrical hazards.

The Director of Energy Safety wrote to Western Australian homeowners informing them about the requirements to turn the power off before anyone enters the roof space. In addition, Building and Energy is distributing free safety stickers to be placed on manholes and switchboards as a reminder to turn off the main switch at the property’s switchboard or meter box before entering the roof space.

There could be exposed live electrical conductors or wiring, damaged or deteriorated cables, non-compliant past electrical work and many other dangers. For everyone’s safety, always turn off the power before anyone enters the roof space.

Under the Work Health and Safety Regulations 2022, it is mandatory for the mains power to be switched off before any worker enters the roof space of a residential property or related buildings such as a shed or garage. The law applies to electricians and all other trades including air-conditioning, solar and security installers, gas fitters, plumbers, insulators, carpenters and pest controllers.”



The Building and Energy Unit of the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety has also issued a reminder in the November edition of Electrical Focus (Issue 7) to electrical contractors and electricians that they ensure they carry out mandatory electrical installation checks and tests before handing over an installation.

The article states, “Building and Energy are seeing far too many cases where the mandatory checking and testing is not being completed, and unsafe electrical installations are putting consumers and tradespeople at risk. Two recent prosecutions again highlight the importance of mandatory electrical checking and testing.

In the first case, an Electrical Contractor was engaged to supply and install a replacement consumer power pole at a property.

An electrical worker, employed by the contractor carried out the work, which included installing a new pre-built, pole-mounted metal switchboard enclosure, a load centre with a main switch, protective devices, an external weatherproof socket outlet, a light and a new overhead mains cable.

The Electrical Contractor submitted a notice of completion to Western Power certifying that the electrical installing work had been checked, tested and found to comply with the Regulations.

A Western Power inspection revealed that the metal switchboard enclosure had not been bonded to earth and that the socket outlet on the side of the metal enclosure was wired incorrectly, with the earth and neutral conductors transposed.

Both defects would have been detected if mandatory checks and tests had been carried out.

In the second case, an electrician attended a home to install the electrical components of a newly fitted window shutter.”

Other interesting articles contained in the November edition of Electrical Focus, Issue 7 include:

  • Most green pillars are not cable distribution cabinets
  • Mounting Solar Panels
  • AS/NZS 3000:2018 Clause
  • Changes to apprentice electrician licensing requirements



Electrical Comms Data reports in its 9 November 2022 edition that “Western Power has been fined $66,000 after an employee received severe electrical burns while using unsafe cleaning equipment near live high-voltage powerlines.”

The article states, “At Perth Magistrates Court on 1 November 2022, the network operator was also ordered to pay costs of $2616.30 following its earlier guilty plea for breaching WA’s electricity network safety laws. According to agreed facts presented in court, the January 2020 incident occurred at Bobalong, in the Great Southern, while the worker was cleaning insulators on Western Power’s high-voltage overhead powerlines.

When the washing stick, or wand, was near a live 22,000-volt conductor, an electrical discharge ran through the equipment and the worker’s left hand, arm and shoulder. The resulting severe burns required specialist treatment at Fiona Stanley Hospital.

An investigation by the state’s electrical safety regulator, Building and Energy, found the wand provided to the employee did not comply with the required standards for washing sticks used near live electricity.

Following the preliminary findings of the investigation, WA’s Director of Energy Safety issued an order reminding all service providers and network operators about the type of live-line washing equipment that is permissible for use, as well as precautions they must take for such activity. The standards require live-work sticks to have insulating rods or foam-filled tubes made from fibreglass-reinforced plastic insulation.

The court was told that the live-work stick provided to the worker was hollow and had an aluminium rod, which failed to protect against the electrical discharge.  …”



The 8 November 2022 edition of Electrical Connection reports that Energy Safe Victoria (ESV) stripped an electrician of their electrical contractor registration following multiple unsafe and fraudulent works.

The article states, “Energy Safe Victoria (ESV) has stripped electrician Stuart Royce Macdonald of his electrical contractor registration following multiple unsafe and fraudulent works across metropolitan Melbourne.

ESV has cancelled Royce’s registered electrical contractor status after he failed to issue Certificates of Electrical Safety, failed to arrange inspections and carried out non-compliant electrical work between 2018 and 2022.

“ESV will pursue enforcement action against electricians and gasfitters who do not meet safety requirements,” ESV chiarperson and commissioner Marnie Williams says.

“Royce has been stripped of his status to be a registered electrical contractor because he overlooked and ignored the very important safety obligations associated with this status.”

ESV is responsible for the licensing of electrical workers, registration of electrical contractors and the overall management of Certificates of Electrical Safety, issued by licensed workers to assure recipients that the installation meets all safety regulations.

ESV found that Mr Macdonald did not complete Certificates of Electrical Safety, carried out unsafe switchboard works, left work unfinished and unsafe and was also paid for works he never completed over the four-year period.”



The latest, 10 November 2022 NSW Small Business Commission newsletter highlights the many events that are on during November NSW Small Business Month. 

The newsletter states, there are “over 400 events happening during November, it’s time to take advantage of #NSWSmallBizMonth and find an event near you.

From networking with industry leaders to keynote sessions on small business trends, you’re sure to find an event that interests you.”

Explore the many events happening in week three of #NSWSmallBizMonth.  It’s time to Connect for Success – find an activity and register today.”


Check out these events happening in the third week of November!

NSW Small Business Commission is happy to answer your questions”

Please reach out if you have any questions and email the team at


The Australian Pipeliner reports in the 8 November 2022 edition, how students are helping to build Queensland’s hydrogen industry.

The article states, “Hydrogen jobs are in the pipeline for QLD high school students, thanks to a new partnership between the Palaszczuk Government and Energy Skills Queensland [ESQ].

Palaszczuk announced the successful Gateway to Industry Schools Program (GISP), would be expanded to include a new hydrogen focussed program, which links students up with local industries to help them explore career opportunities in the sector.

“We know a strong, skilled workforce will be needed to support the clean energy economy and the roll out of the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan, including the exciting opportunities in the hydrogen sector,” Palaszczuk said.

“That’s why we are partnering with ESQ to bring these opportunities into the classroom and allow students to have hands on experience and see if the hydrogen industry is right for them.”

The Hydrogen Gateway to Industry Schools Project will be delivered in at least 30 Queensland schools, engaging more than 2000 students over the next three years. The Gateway to Industry Schools project will be the 11th in the successful program, which helps attract students to key industries

Energy, Renewables and Energy Minister Mick de Brenni said QLD’s clean energy transformation was the state’s greatest jobs opportunity in a generation.

“The Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan is expected to deliver 100,000 jobs additional jobs in Queensland and our independent modelling confirms our $12 billion hydrogen opportunity could create 10,000 of those,” de Brenni said.



SafeWork NSW has shared their latest construction newsletter for stakeholders in the construction industry. 

The newsletter of 10 November 2022 covers the following reports:

  • WOMEN IN CONSTRUCTION: SafeWork NSW recognises the value of women in construction and is proud to share our latest SafetyCast where five inspiring women talk about how they got started in the industry, what they love about construction and what they would like to see in the future for women in the construction industry.
  • 2022/2023 EARTHMOVING PLANT IN CONSTRUCTION (EPIC): From October 2022 to April 2023, SafeWork NSW Inspectors will be targeting excavations and earthmoving plant across NSW to address non-compliance focusing on exclusion zones, location of services for planning and preparation, operator competency, and use of plant.
  • CONSTRUCTION SITE SUPERVISOR WORKSHOPS: Register now for our November and December 2022 workshops.

These workshops are designed for Construction Supervisors, Trade Supervisors, Construction Managers, Foreman, Superintendents or a Leading Hand to learn from our experienced team of Inspectors about workplace health and safety (WHS) in construction.

  • ELECTRICAL SAFETY IN CONSTRUCTION — [Free Webinar]: Contact with electricity is a major cause of serious injuries and fatalities in NSW workplaces. Join our SafeWork NSW Inspectors and experts as they discuss this important topic and share simple measures to work safely when working with or near electricity and electrical equipment.
  • When?
    • 30 November from 1.30pm to 2.15pm – Book now
    • 1 December from 4.00pm to 4.45pm – Book now
  • SAFEWORK NSW INSPECTORS NOW WEARING BODY CAMERAS: Inspectors will wear body worn video during all work-place interactions, but the camera will remain in standby mode and will not record until activated by the Inspector.
  • CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY DOCTORATE PROGRAM (CIDP): The CIDP is a vocational PhD program giving experienced industry professionals the opportunity to conduct solutions-focused research that solve industry-wide problems.
  • MAKING SAFETY IN CONSTRUCTION HANDY: Every year, too many workers are killed or injured on NSW construction sites. The pocket guide to construction safety provides practical information on common health and safety issues on construction sites including working at heights, falling objects, plant, electricity and amenities. To order a hard copy or download a pdf visit SafeWork NSW’s building and construction webpage
  • SAFEWORK NSW BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION SAFETY SYMPOSIUMEvaluation Report (download): SafeWork NSW is pleased to share the evaluation report of its inaugural Building and Construction Safety Symposium and Regional Roadshow events held during May and June 2022 across NSW.



Master Electricians Australia (MEA) reports in its 14 November 2022 MEA Industry News of jail sentence issued to a construction worker for throwing a concrete block that hit an apprentice on the head.

The article states, “A construction worker has been handed a jail sentence after he threw a six-kilogram concrete block and hit an apprentice in the head.

The 49-year-old concrete driller was on an elevated work platform (EWP) during an air-conditioning installation project, when he and a group of workers and an apprentice engaged in banter about wearing hardhats. The driller jokingly threw a six-piece of concrete waste from the drilling, at the group. It struck the apprentice in the head, knocking him to the ground. He sustained a serious head injury, a fractured skull, bleeding on the brain, a serious head laceration, black eye, damage to sinus cavity, chipped teeth, and bruising to his shoulder and collarbone.

The worker was found guilty by a jury in Brisbane District Court for breaching section 31 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 having failed to comply with his health and safety duty pursuant to section 28 of the Act. He was sentenced to four months’ imprisonment, which he wholly suspended for four months.”



The 10 November 2022 edition of EneregyInsider, a joint publication of Energy Networks Australia (ENA) and Australian Energy Council (AEC), examines the cost-benefit of rooftop solar PV with battery storage. 

In the article, Mitchell Cutting reviews whether rooftop solar PV with battery storage is increasingly likely to be part of Australia’s transition to renewable energy, as the price reduces, and technology improves. 

Mitchell states, “A key factor for many households will be the payback period. But, does the cost-benefit analysis stack up currently and how is it likely to change in future?

We take a look at the types of batteries available, their costs and the incentives that are likely to encourage more households to take-up batteries with solar installations.


There are three types of battery systems available for purchase in Australia:

  1. Lead-acid batteries – Traditionally used for off-grid power systems but not widely used today,
  2. Lithium-ion batteries – most common type of battery and advancing rapidly, and
  3. Flow batteries – Generally used for larger energy storage applications and gradually evolving.

Prior to the release of the Tesla Powerwall in 2015, home battery systems were generally made up of lead-acid batteries. Lithium-ion batteries are now the most common battery in Australia due to their efficiency, scalability and longer life compared with lead-acid batteries.

Cost Implications

Over the past 10 years, cheaper electricity has not been the only factor leading households and businesses to invest in storage technology. Batteries provide backup power when grid supply is not available, allow a household to store excess solar energy from rooftop PV systems for later use and can help make a property energy independent.

A recent report from the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) says “falling battery costs and longer warranty lifetimes, accompanied by changes to solar feed-in tariffs and tariffs for using energy in peak periods, are changing the incentives to invest in residential batteries”.

Falling solar feed in tariffs and the introduction of export charges from 2024 will also add to the economics of a battery for the end user. An end user who is able to store excess solar energy at a time when feed-in tariffs apply not only avoids said feed in tariff, but also saves the cost of import charges when utilising the stored energy at a later time. Maximum benefits are gained if stored energy is utilised when time of use tariffs are at their peak.  …

… It’s estimated that more than 30,000 batteries have been installed over the past couple of years and the total number of batteries installed in Australian residences to date is likely more than double that reported by the CER. Even so, households with a battery system installed remain only a small fraction of the more than 3.3 million homes with solar PV on their rooftops.”


For more, contact Mitchell Cutting


In a second EneregyInsider news item of the 10 November 2022 edition, relates to the release of a major two-year research report on the strategies that could be deployed to make Electric Vehicles in Australia more affordable.

The article states, “Australia lags way behind other nations in uptake of electric vehicles (EVs). However as increasing numbers of car manufacturers commit to the EV transition and government policy settings support customer adoption, this will change – and it is likely to change quickly.

Will our power grid be swamped by the tsunami, or can we surf the wave?

A major two-year research project, just wrapped up in Australia, offers some answers to how we can give customers a more affordable EV journey that can also help support our power system.

EVs present benefits and challenges for our electricity distribution networks, depending on when, where and how they draw power from the grid.

The charging behaviour of EVs requires networks to rethink how they will invest in, build, and operate the grid of the future. They must consider the potential impacts of unmanaged EVs on the grid, as well as what EV hosting capacity will look like five, ten and 20 years from now.

A recent report by the University of Melbourne provides insights and recommendations from a major two-year EV Integration project funded by Energy Networks Australia (ENA) and the Centre for New Energy Technologies (C4NET) in collaboration with the Australian Power Institute (API). The project investigated the impacts on distribution networks of unmanaged EVs using real-world usage patterns and explored potential solutions to tackle these issues.

In our previous articles EVs and the grid and Are we ready for the EV revolution, we outlined the likely impacts of unmanaged charging, the effectiveness of EV management strategies and importance of time of use (ToU) tariffs.

What solar panels were to the mid-2000s, electric vehicles will be to the 2020s and beyond. But if they are plugged in unchecked without clear policy leadership, they will wreak havoc on the electricity grid. If we have millions of Australians coming home during heatwaves, turning on air conditioners and starting to charge their EV, our grid simply won’t cope. The good news is this can be easily avoided – if we act soon.

The main take away of the report is that combining smart EV management (through smart chargers) with cost-reflective tariffs can maximise benefits to both customers and networks and save customers money in bills by increasing network utilisation and reducing the need for investment.

Australia is still an early adopter with EV market share of less than four per cent. We have an opportunity to design and coordinate policy that ensures our power system delivers for customers when the future EV wave hits. …”


For more, contact Monaaf Al-Falahi


John Thompson, reporter at Utility Magazine takes a look at the major works that have been underway to increase capacity at Transgrid’s Victoria-New South Wales Interconnector (VNI), in the news article published 10 November 2022.

The article states, “Recent upgrades, totalling $45 million, have increased capacity by 170MW at Transgrid’s Victoria-New South Wales Interconnector (VNI).

Transgrid CEO, Brett Redman, said the project was delivered on budget and features world-leading SmartValve technology from US-based grid enhancing technology company, Smart Wires.

“The speed at which the energy transition is accelerating means we must embrace new technology and innovate and SmartValve is a perfect example of how Transgrid is doing just that,” Mr Redman said.

“This clever technology benefits both customers and the environment and will allow renewable energy from Victoria to flow into New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory when demand is greatest.”

Transgrid is the first large-scale user of SmartValve technology in Australia. The technology detects congestion on the transmission network and redirects power off overloaded lines onto transmission lines with spare capacity and enables substations to be upgraded using existing infrastructure.

Nine SmartValve units were installed at Transgrid’s Stockdill substation in the Australian Capital Territory to unlock 120MW of additional energy, while six units at Yass substation will provide another 50MW.”


Whilst Transgrid’s VNI project is a milestone, Transgrid’s major works program over the 2023-28 regulatory period, portends the delivery of four significant projects.  These have been identified as actionable and future actionable projects in the Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO’s) Draft 2022 Integrated System Plan (ISP) [Source: Transgrid’s Response to AER Rate of Return Final Working Papers].  These are:

  • HumeLink
  • Victoria to New South Wales Interconnector (VNI) West
  • Sydney Ring (reinforcing Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong supply), and
  • Queensland to New South Wales Interconnector (QNI) connect.

The total indicative cost of these projects in the 2023-28 period is $6.4 billion.  This is additional to capex of $2,552.7 million (Real 2022-23) approved by the AER in the current 2018-23 regulatory period for Powering Sydney’s Future, Project Energy Connect (PEC), VNI Minor and QNI Minor and attests to the scale of the investment required across the entire NEM over the next few decades.

The result will be a need for an expanded and larger pool of qualified workers to support the array of projects proposed.  Current labour and skill shortages if not addressed are most likely to impact on their delivery.