Fortescue Future Industries appoints Michael Gunner as head of North Australia team


Former Northern Territory Chief Minister Michael Gunner will join Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) to lead the new Northern Australia team.

In another important step in realizing FFI’s global green energy vision, Mr. Gunner will bring a wealth of experience and credibility to FFI as the company explores opportunities for job-creating projects in the Northern Territory and North West WA.

Mr Gunner will take up his post as Head of FFI for North Australia in November following the expiration of his work restriction period under the Northern Territory Ministerial Code of Conduct. He will lead a new FFI team based in Darwin.

Mr Gunner had a highly successful political career, serving as Chief Minister of the Northern Territory from 2016 until his resignation in May. He resigned from political life in July.

Chairman and founder of Fortescue, Dr Andrew Forrest AO, said bringing in someone with Mr Gunner’s leadership qualities and experience of working hand-in-hand with the people of northern Australia would make him a valuable asset to FFI.

“Bringing in someone of Mr Gunner’s reputation – particularly in the Northern Territory – and his personal qualities is central to our vision for FFI,” Dr Forrest said.

“We see huge potential in the Northern Territory, with abundant wind and solar power, and a community keen to embrace renewable energy and the employment-intensive industries that come with it.

“The industry-leading decarbonization strategy we unveiled in New York in September provided clear evidence that Fortescue is leading the world in its transition to a global resource and green renewable energy company.

“It’s people like Michael Gunner who will help us make our ambitions a reality.”

Mr Gunner said he was passionate about ending the climate wars, creating local jobs and his role in FFI’s pursuit of a better world for our children – a world without fossil fuels.

“The Territories want the renewables sector to take off and the job-intensive industries that renewables need,” Gunner said.

“We must bring the same urgency to the climate change race to true zero as we have with the global COVID pandemic.

“FFI will do this by supporting Territorians – local jobs and local businesses – to work with us to fight the climate catastrophe caused by fossil fuels.

“The speech from Dr Forrest and FFI was simple and straight to the heart: do it for the kids.

“By going commercially to zero, at FFI we are helping to deliver the real climate change impacts the world needs.

“Leading the FFI North Australia team means delivering world-changing economy-building projects, acting at the pace of an emergency to create local jobs, partner with First Nations people and produce green energy that reduces our dependence on fossil fuels.

“My message is clear: FFI is committed to aggressively reducing emissions, and FFI is here now. I will lead our local race to true zero from Darwin, Australia’s northern capital.

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