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Über-hip Adelaide? « Previous | |Next »
August 19, 2012

Adelaide wants its groove back. It desires to be a vibrant, fun city like Melbourne, which celebrates itself as the world's most liveable city. Adelaide, as a compact regional city, is encouraging local enthusiasms—bicycles, food carts, microbrews, artisanal whatnot, regional food, wine etc. Über-hip Adelaide is the new brand.

AdelaideGilbertStBWS.jpg Gary Sauer-Thompson, Gilbert St, Adelaide

The problem is that it has a bleak labour market. Adelaide is an economic backwater. It has yet to benefit from the national shift to a low carbon economy, even though renewable energy has taken off in South Australia.

Renewable energy is not a growth industry because there is no manufacturing of wind-turbine or solar panels in the state. There is also the well-educated “creatives” living in the precarious “knowledge economy” on a contract-to-contract basis. So the quality of life undercuts the liveable city.

What is not happening is the slow, boring work of improving a local area’s educational attainment as path to prosperity in an informational economy. Adelaide needs to have a large numbers of skilled workers who will either attract employers from outside or else lay the groundwork for homegrown success, as well as become a vibrant city.

Little is being done to address rising sea levels. Similarly with increased heat waves which are exacerbated by the urban heat island effect. This is where the centres of a large agglomeration get several degrees warmer than their surrounding rural areas because heat is captured in solid structures such as buildings and roads.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:01 AM | | Comments (16)
Comments

Comments

It is a shame because S.A is a great place. Its all about mining now as you know in regards to skilled workers.
I have just joined the FIFO gang myself so i am not totally up on it yet.
Are mining jobs being advertised from S.A fifo to hedland and bowen basin regions? Or are the tradesmen packing up and moving to the regions?

That renewable energy link to Giles Parkinson is interesting.
Solar installations must have taken up some slack in the employment sector, there are a lot of companies and installers working out there. Wouldn't it have been lovely to have been able to install panels with "Made in Australia" stamped on them?

What bothers me with SA and Adelaide is the sense that we are no longer in control of our destinies, even the politicians seem just dull bureaucrats every thing is branch office and there is no sense of home grown, imaginative people in charge.

Just completed a fascinating cyber-journey starting from here, due to the presence of a link here to Peter Martin, the ABC economics correspondent.
This involves an interview at ABC radio last week (891?)involving Paul Cleary, the journalist and economist, and Former state treasurer Foley involving negotiation with BHP over royalities from Roxby Downs.
My friend Ric Tonkin at Web Diary was concerned enough by the contents of the interview to post a thread starter and so it was an interesting experience to find Martin is covering this and is participating in a second interview, also including Kevin Foley included in his thread starter.
I suspect the issue involves Foley's competence against the complexities involved in negotiating deals, given a background that seems far too esoteric and complex for the likes of an average oik fully grasp, but is something that a more competent individual like yourself could understand and perhaps offer an explanatory observation or two yourself on, given that this thread is about SA'future.

fred,
Australia is no longer able to do much in the way of manufacturing--that is increasingly being in China. But we can develop the expertise and knowledge about renewable energy and what is required to shift to a low carbon economy.

paul,
South Australian politicians cannot manage the global economy -- the state is on the receiving end of changes in the global economy (eg., the global financial crisis), or fluctuating commodity prices.

However, the local politicians--at state and council level--- do have the power to design and shape the city of Adelaide so that it is more people friendly, vibrant and sustainable city. Politics gets in the way ---those on the Right are opposed to reforms to make Adelaide a more people friendly, vibrant and sustainable city.

A good example is their opposition to public transport and bike lanes which involve rolling back the car.

paul,
thanks for the links.

I've read the Richard Tonkin post on Webdiary that you referred to above. All the signs are that the expansion of Olympic Dam by BHP is on hold because of falling commodity prices.

Judging from the radio interview with Peter Martin Kevin Foley did the best he could do under the circumstances, if SA was to get the Olympic Dam expansion up and running.

Les,
SA's future as a quarry---BHP + Olympic Dam-- is far from being secured.

"The Defence State"s naval projects at Techport, which was planned as the hub of a future US Naval maintenance and resupply base, has also delayed its expansion plans for a few years.

Solar in SA is heavily biased towards small residential systems of less than 2 kilowatts. The industry is one almost entirely focused on the residential sector.

Placing solar on commercial business rooftops in the CBD of the major capital cities has not happened. Nor are the factories all over Australia covered with PV cells.

South Australia has no identity really. Especially from overseas. Tourism is a bit bleak i would think.
Apart from a few festivals and wine little is known.
It could actually be called " the quiet state".
It needs a vamp.

The SA Liberals are not interested in making Adelaide a more vibrant and sustainable place. At the party’s annual general meeting on the weekend Isobel Redmond laid out the issues she believed will resonate with voters

Reducing cost of living pressures for families
Repairing the economy and helping small business
Restoring faith and honesty to government
Delivering better services: the best schools, sufficient numbers of doctors to serve all communities, buses turning up on time
Building strong and safe communities, in the city and in regional centres

Redmond said that a viable economic footing can only be delivered by a strong Liberal government.

regional economies such as South Australia are facing a key question: with an exchange rate above parity with the US dollar what local industries can survive and which new industries might thrive with well-designed support?

BHP-Billiton's Olympic Dam project is a long haul proposition.It is part of the companies ‘resource basins’ In Australia, these basins include the Olympic Dam copper mine; Western Australia iron ore; and Queensland coal.

Well what a prophet!
Olympic dam has been put on hold, as predicted.
Am moved to speculate that the Foley approach may have been less incorrect that earlier supposed.
No doubt BHP will sit back like a vulture and wait for the SA economy to worsen due to extraneous factors, then try to drive rent down even further.

The Labor government in South Australia under Mike Rann and Jay Weatherill invested huge amounts of political capital in negotiating and delivering the Olympic Dam agreement.The decision to knock over the project by BHP-Billiton was caused by subdued commodity prices and higher capital costs.

BHP-Billiton will wait for the right time to exploit the rich deposits that are available to them.

South Australia’s economy, like the rest of Australia, is mainly based in services in its capital of Adelaide. Mining accounts for a relatively small share of South Australia’s overall economy

Mining booms invariably falter in the face of global economic crises.

The Leader of the Opposition, Isobel Redmond declared that the mining and carbon taxes were the cause for the decision to shelve the expansion of Olympic Dam. She also claimed that the BHP-Billiton decision lead to terminal decline in the South Australian economy