IGCC Summit 2023: Just Transitions

21 September 2023
At IGCC Summit 2023, a key focus was "Just Transitions" and laying the foundation for the new economy.

Over half of Australia’s emissions and two-thirds of export revenue are concentrated in less than half a dozen regional areas.

As such, industrial decarbonisation and the development of Australia’s green economy must be place-based and share both the costs and opportunities of the energy transition with affected workers and communities.


  • During our insightful panel discussion, “Vital Regions: Unlocking Capital for Australia’s Just Transition,” we delved into the barriers to investing in Australia’s industrial regions, and the best strategies for working with communities and industries that will be affected by Australia’s transition to a net zero economy.
  • Two common concerns that limit private capital flows into transitioning regions include the size and growth potential of opportunities, information asymmetries, and the absence of clear, local and long-term policy signals about the role of future industries.
  • Some solutions for these challenges include the development of socially inclusive and supported Regional Transition Plans, creating “front doors” for investors and businesses to access support across a wide range of state and federal government programs, establishing or growing regionally focused investment funds that can identify, aggregate and grow local investment opportunities.


  • We were encouraged to take a broader vision of investment into regional economies, with opportunities discussed across new green energy industries and renewable energy zones, social infrastructure to enhance livability in regional communities and decarbonisation of high-emissions anchor industries.
  • Investors and policy makers must take into consideration workforce requirements and social infrastructure (health, education, childcare, affordable housing) alongside other local priorities, including biodiversity and land use planning, for transition planning to have lasting community support.
  • We heard that inclusive transitioning planning adds value through new perspectives and solutions. The involvement of First Nations representatives on Boards and designing governance models with shared upside equity was raised as a key example of this value-adding inclusive practice.


  • Additionally, during the panel, “Unlocking Australian Sector Targets and Pathways” we were encouraged to take a tailored and specific approach towards a Just Transition, especially for regions more reliant on hard-to-bate sectors and heavy industrials.
  • We heard how sector targets and pathways can also be fed into models that will support diversifying trade exposure away from carbon-intensive commodities, with production concentrated within a few select regional areas.
  • In fact, Dr Frank Jotzo mentioned that the opportunity for green iron value add in this country has the potential to be the equivalent of Australian coal exports due to the highly significant value add from the greening process.
  • Samantha Bayes, Senior Associate at Roc Partners, shared how her team has collaborated with the government to invest in regions through managing the Victorian Business Growth Fund. The initiative supports regional investment for companies between $5 million and $100 million annual revenue that find it challenging to secure capital to grow.


  • Following the summit, IGCC facilitated a site visit in Newcastle for investors to develop a deeper understanding of the investment needs, challenges and opportunities in the broader Hunter Valley region.
  • The trip focused on regional decarbonisation, attracting new green industries, and delivering a just transition for affected workers and communities.
  • Investors had the opportunity to directly engage with two industrial sites and local stakeholders, including community groups, businesses and government representatives.
A heartfelt thanks to all our speakers, sponsors, and attendees who made this Summit an inspiring experience.