Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has appointed Scott Stewart as the new Queensland Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy following Anthony Lynham’s retirement from the role.
As the Member for Townsville, Stewart is focussed on the economic recovery of regional Queensland post-COVID-19 and sees the resources sector as the way ahead for the state.
Stewart entered the Queensland state parliament in 2015 and has lived in Townsville for more than 15 years.
Prior to entering politics, Stewart worked in education for 28 years as a teacher and principal at several Townsville high schools including Pilmco State High School.
Pilmco is one of 80 Queensland schools involved in the state government supported Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) initiative.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said Stewart had been a strong and familiar voice within the resources sector that recognises the value of the mining and gas industries to the Sunshine State.
“I know the premier has backed the people of North Queensland and are now backing me to make sure we get our resources really working, particularly for us in North Queensland,” Stewart said.
“We love our resources and we will work them hard because we know this is a pathway back to our economic recovery and it’s a major employer of people in my region.
“I’ll continue to represent the people of Townsville well and also represent the people of Queensland when it comes to the resources sector.”
Stewart has already met with Macfarlane, who congratulated the former on his elevation to cabinet and to discuss plans for the mining, oil and gas industries.
“This plan will be a joint effort between industry and the government to chart future growth, jobs and opportunities in the resources sector,” Macfarlane said.
“To demonstrate that shared commitment, I (have) invited the minister to arrange as many mining and gas site visits as his schedule allows.”
Upon swearing Stewart in, Palaszczuk also noted the importance of regional Queensland to the recovery, naming Lance McCallum as the Assistant Minister for Hydrogen Development.
“I want all hands on deck when it comes to the COVID recovery,” Palaszczuk said.
“There will be a big focus on regional Queensland. I have increased assistant ministers including an Assistant Minister for Hydrogen Development.
“I believe that I have put the best people forward for these jobs in the ministry and assistant ministry. We’ve got a big job ahead of us, the people of this state put their trust in us.”