Emily Peele

Trade Scholar

Construction – Electrician


As an electrician, I want to help pave a better way for the next generation. I want to turn electricity into a thriving part of the environment, instead of it consuming all our limited fossil fuels and negatively impacting our climate.  Educating people about the responsibilities we have as individuals in society to use renewable energy in our homes and every day life if of utmost importance. I want to make Australia a greener place to live, so by developing new products and techniques, it will make it an easier, more cost and time efficient transition to a more renewable, sustainable future.

My BBM Global Industry Scholarship will help educate me about the different sources of renewable energy. I have a particular interest in hydroelectricity as I feel like it has lots of untapped potential in the Australian environment.

I want to learn how to get to near 100% renewable energy production, working State by State until Australia as a whole is powered by sustainable resources. By learning about different techniques and types of machinery, I’d like to see this process become more autonomous and economically viable.

There are 7 countries at or near 100 percent renewable energy. These include Iceland, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Norway, Austria, Brazil and Denmark. However, all these countries are significantly smaller in land mass or have very different climates to Australia.

It’s important to understand how countries utilise their natural resources and landscapes to their advantage.

Canada, although slightly larger and with a greater population, is very comparable to Australia. They have very similar rainfall and temperate climates in the south of both countries.

Already, five of Canada’s provinces produce over 90% of their power from hydroelectricity, utilising their natural, rapid-flowing waterways. There are many companies that generate this type of power. Each province has at least one energy company that produces the mass of their hydro electricity including ATCO Electric, BC Hydro, Hydro-Quebec, Manitoba Hydro, Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro and Ontario Hydro.

By choosing a country equivalent to Australia, I will get the best knowledge on how we can utilise so many different resources spanning across such a vast countryside. In Canada, they have implemented outstanding techniques and technologies to utilise their rapid natural water systems to reach 94% hydroelectric power in Yukon, 95% in Newfoundland and Labrador, 97% in British Columbia, and 99% in Quebec. They also utilise wind, tidal, earth, solar and biomass to their advantage, all contributing to the total energy production of Canada.

By learning from companies that have already developed a province-wide dependency on hydroelectricity, we can apply their techniques and procedures to the already established Australian hydro network by making them larger, more efficient and more economically viable.

Being able to bring this knowledge back to Australia will enable us to develop a more innovative and sustainable power generation network for ourselves.

Through my current knowledge and knowledge gained through this scholarship, sharing my experiences with the wider community could help educate about the importance of renewable energy. By educating the younger generation on how energy is actually produced, we can teach them the responsibility of not wasting it. This snowballing effect will greater impact the future generations to come.

In my final year of my apprenticeship, I’ve been able to help and guide younger apprentices coming through the trade. By teaching them more effective and efficient methods, I’ve been able to help build their confidence within themselves. I’ve also been able to show how important it is to have diversity within the trade. Being a female in a male-dominated industry, I’ve lead by example about how important a trade is in your education and individual growth, no matter age, experience or gender. In doing so, I’ve helped many girls gain confidence to try working in a trade, giving them more independence, self-satisfaction and also having fun along the way. I’ve even been lucky enough to have my younger sister follow in my footsteps, working together everyday. Once I’m qualified, I’d like to mentor and encourage younger people to consider the career of a trade.

As an apprentice electrician in my fourth and final year, I have dedicated my education and practical skills to solving problems and overcoming failures. One of the reasons why I decided to become an electrician was that I loved the challenge of fixing things. Using and developing problem solving skills every day, not only makes me better at my job but also forces me to think differently. Going forward, I want to continue developing those skills to lead me into a variety of disciplines within the electrical sector. I believe that by having a well rounded view, it will give me more insight to develop into an innovative, constructive, developmental and educational electrician.

“Emily put forward a well thought out proposal going beyond her current work placement and having a vision for renewable energy. This puts this applicant in the first position. […] There is a genuine desire to give back to industry.” – BBM Industry Panel


“Emily shows a great passion and understanding of sustainability in her field and has conducted a lot research on industry needs and global trends. I think this applicant will make great use of this scholarship to develop her own career and make an impact on the industry as a whole.” – BBM Industry Panel

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