National Landholder Engagement Training

Australia is embarking on renewable energy projects the scale of which have not been seen in most people’s lifetimes. With this, a growing number of landholders are being approached to host renewable energy infrastructure on their land. 

These renewable energy development projects, as well as the maintenance of existing infrastructure, can impact the agricultural operations, and lives and livelihoods of landholders and their communities.

Together, we have a responsibility to recognise and minimise these impacts and work towards shared value outcomes for everyone.

Register now: National Landholder Engagement Training in September 2024

Are you talking to landholders and regional communities about renewable energy projects and infrastructure?

Join us for our 3rd round of National Landholder Engagement Training on 2, 3 and 4 September 2024, held at the Transgrid Discovery Hub in Wagga Wagga. This training aims to support those engaging with landholders and communities on renewable energy developments to do their job well and support better shared value outcomes. 

We will hear directly from landholders on what’s going well and where we can improve as well as a full day on understanding community concerns and better practice communications and engagement. We will also get insights from land agents and community engagement leaders about things they have learnt on the ground and explore how to support each other.

Topics to be covered

  • The social licence context
  • Setting the scene: Renewable energy development in New South Wales and why we need to get it right
  • Landholder Insights Panel: Chat with landholders on what’s going well and our opportunities to improve
  • Communicating controversial projects: Full day training on understanding and responding meaningfully to community concern
  • Land Agent Insights Panel: Chat with land agents and community engagement leaders to share experiences
  • Site visit: Renewables greenfields site, meeting with host landholder
  • Site visit: Transmission towers and sub-station in construction phase
  • Site visit: Solar farm in operation, meeting with host landholder

National Landholder Engagement Training in February 2024

Are you working in regional communities and talking to landholders about energy infrastructure?

Our 2nd round of Landholder Engagement Training on 27, 28 and 29 February 2024 supported those engaging with landholders on renewable energy development to do job their job well, while keeping themselves and the landholders they’re working with physically and emotionally safe. We heard directly from landholders on what’s going well and where we can improve, as well as how innovative partnerships are creating shared benefit.

Topics covered

  • The social licence context
  • Setting the scene: Renewable energy development in Queensland and why we need to get it right
  • Landholder insights panel: Chat with landholders on what’s going well and opportunities to improve
  • Shared value: An essential building block for social licence
  • Site visit: Partnering to support endangered wildlife
  • Site visit: Partnering for bushfire management
  • Site visit: Partnering to manage invasive plants
  • Biosecurity: Washdown, obligations and new threats
  • Compassion in conflict: Positive communication and de-escalation strategies
  • Creating psychologically safe spaces: Safe ways of working with impacted landholders facing cumulative stressors, including as a result of energy development
  • Look after yourself: Practical tips to support your own mental wellbeing

Landholder Insights Panel

During the February 2024, at the Landholder Engagement Training in Meanjin/Brisbane, we heard from a landholder insights panel who shared their stories on hosting renewable energy infrastructure.

Landholder insights panel
Landholder insights panel 2
Landholder insights panel 3

Their wrap on what good engagement looks like:

  • From James L Walker, “Look for opportunities to bring community in and get buy in.”
  • From Ashleigh Duncan, “Transparency will build you trust.”
  • From Susan Findlay Tickner, “Don’t ever promise anything you can’t deliver.”
  • From Brent Finlay, “Listen to what landholders say. Let them go at their own speed. Listen to what they say about how they want to communicate with them.”
  • From our moderator, Jo Sheppard GAICD, CEO Queensland Farmers’ Federation, “The people are important, but the governance and frameworks that sit around those people are just as important.”

In this wide ranging discussion, we covered everything from biosecurity, neighbour relationships, community benefits, the importance of soil, succession planning and opportunities to support on farm safety.

“It was such a great opportunity to understand how energy infrastructure and farming can coexist.”
National Landholder Engagement Training Feb 2024

National Landholder Engagement Training in October 2023

The face-to-face training sessions were held on Tuesday 3 October – Wednesday 4 October 2023 in Victoria, with the purpose of supporting those responsible for working directly with impacted landholders to help them do their job well, while keeping themselves and the landholders physically and emotionally safe.

Hosted by AusNet Services, the training brought Land Agents and Landholder Engagement teams from Transgrid, Powerlink Queensland, Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and VicGrid together, building on the work led by TasNetworks and Andrew Dyer, Australian Energy Infrastructure Comissioner earlier in the year.

“I loved it! The content covered, and the connections made were top notch! I had so many light bulb moments along the way which will better prepare me for the growth and challenges facing our industry. I even reached out to a new connection I made from another transmission business to see if they would be my mentor! We have so much we can learn from each other, and this was the perfect foundation to do this!”
National Landholder Engagement Training Oct 2023

Landholder Engagement Training outcomes

Over the two-day training course, participants shared insights with peers as well as heard from a range of subject matter experts and landholders with a focus on four key areas including:

  • WHO: Understanding landholders and regional communities
  • WHY: Building and maintaining social licence
  • WHAT: The role and opportunities for better practice
  • HOW: Communication, empathy and psychological safety

Topics covered

  • Landholder insights – Breakfast fireside chat
  • Farmers + engagement
  • What’s better practice social licence
  • Walking in the landholder shoes and thriving through the journey
  • Panel Q&A – Environment, planning and heritage approvals
  • Access agreement “Choose Your Own Adventure” role play
  • Land and easement valuations for transmission projects
  • Understanding the legal process through the eyes the landowner
  • Construction – Understanding and identifying key impacts
  • What can we do better workshop?
  • Creating psychological safety for teams
  • Empathy in practice
  • Creating a peer support Action Plan
“The worst response to a complex problem is thinking that there is a simple solution”
Kate Burke Ag Specialist
Kate Burke
Ag Specialist