Illawarra unions have launched a community alliance in support of the proposed offshore wind zone for the Illawarra as a "once in a lifetime" opportunity for green jobs.
The move comes as the first in-person consultation sessions are held in the Illawarra, with six sessions held throughout this week.
Union heavyweight Arthur Rorris said the idea was not a spur of the moment vision.
"We have been working towards this for 15 years and the day has come," Mr Rorris, secretary of the South Coast Labour Council said.
The SCLC along with Business Illawarra, the University of Wollongong and councils in the Illawarra joined forces in the early 2010s to push for jobs associated with the then growing wind power industry.
The group claimed to have some wins but was wound down as Australia scaled back its climate ambitions during the Coalition government.
Mr Rorris said the aim was to create an alliance of workers in steel, manufacturing and transport and community climate change advocates and neighbourhood forums.
"This is a golden opportunity," Mr Rorris said. "It comes around once in a lifetime and for the first time in this climate change crisis we have a perfect alignment of steel, raw materials and manufacturing capacity that is just made for the Illawarra and Port Kembla.
"We do not intend to let this opportunity go."
The government estimates that an offshore wind industry, once up and running in Australia, would produce between 3000 and 8000 jobs. In the Illawarra, were the proposal to go ahead, there would be 2500 jobs during construction and 1250 ongoing roles.
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