Australia to Tackle Modern Slavery Risks in Renewables

New South Wales (NSW) Anti-Slavery Commissioner Dr James Cockayne has partnered with Australia’s Clean Energy Council to address modern slavery-related risks in NSW’s renewable energy value chains by developing a Code of Conduct. Cockayne will be recommending that NSW government and local council entities abide by the Code, which will align with Australia’s existing international commitments and obligations, including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. The Code of Conduct will be developed with support from law firm Norton Rose Fulbright and multi-stakeholder respondents to a consultation process. A draft Code will be published in December, with comments welcomed until February 2024, with the final Code slated for March 2024. “The transition to renewable energy must be a just transition,” said Cockayne. “Slavery cannot be the price of decarbonisation. Without clarity on how to effectively manage modern slavery risks in renewable energy value chains, both people and investments in renewable energy infrastructure may be at risk. We aim to produce a Code of Practice that offers protections and greater certainty to taxpayers, investors, renewable energy companies, and workers.”

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