Get to know Mayor Peter Long
BE (Hons); BA; BSc(Env Sc); GAICD; CPEng (1988-2012); CEnvP; FIEAust
Peter has lived in Karratha since 1985, where he moved with his wife Vicki after nine years working and travelling overseas in Europe, Asia, South Africa and the USA. A professional engineer and environmental scientist by training, Peter and Vicki, established a consultancy service providing professional engineering, biological and environmental management services to industries across the region. The Astron group grew to some 90 full and part time employees with offices in Karratha, Perth and Margaret River. Peter left the company in 2014.
Peter first stood for Council in 2011 as he was keen to lend a hand in the Shire’s governance and development. He became the City’s first Mayor in 2014. During his time on Council, Peter has advocated for and worked with the excellent City staff and elected members to develop major new infrastructure across the City. For some years now, he has been working to diversify the City’s economy away from mining to more sustainable industries including agriculture, tourism, aquaculture and new technologies. He has a strong relationship with the Roebourne community, communicates regularly and openly with them and endeavours to improve the well-being of our original Australians.
Peter has worked widely across the north of Western Australia, in particular the coastal Pilbara and the islands of the North-west Shelf. He has been closely involved in various roles with many of the region’s major developments, including Gorgon, Robe River, Griffin, Wheatstone, Varanus, Port of Dampier, Hamersley Iron and Dampier Salt. He has worked in design, construction, project management and business management roles and has served or remains on a range of Boards including St Luke’s College (Chair), West Pilbara TAFE, Regional Capitals Alliance WA (Chair), Pilbara University Centre, Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia, WALGA State Council, Rangelands NRM and the Northern Australia Advisory Council.
Peter does what he can to promote innovative new technologies, some of which are very exciting, such as EcoMag’s proposed plant which will extract magnesium from seawater; or Yara’s renewable ammonia proposal. Peter considers renewable hydrogen as an important energy storage technology which can contribute greatly to reducing carbon emissions while providing a sustainable export industry for Karratha and the nation. Karratha is at the centre of some magnificent scenery and areas of vast cultural significance such as Murujuga – the largest collection of rock art in the world. Peter is keen to protect the magnificent Pilbara environment - which in many areas has been impacted greatly by industry and human interaction over the last 50 years.
Peter has seen many changes in Karratha since 1985 when buying a television meant travelling to Port Hedland. The CBD then consisted of a Farmers Supermarket and an alleyway of small shops open to the Pilbara summer heat. Since then, we have seen the construction of the entire Karratha City shopping centre, St Luke’s College, the Tambrey Centre, the Walkington Theatre, much of the TAFE college and several schools. In the last decade, the City has built more public infrastructure than was achieved in the previous quarter-century, and these include landmark facilities such as Karratha Airport, the Karratha Leisureplex and the Red Earth Arts Precinct.
Peter is married to one of the Pilbara’s foremost botanists, Vicki Long, who heads her own consultancy, VLA. Peter and Vicki have two daughters who were raised and educated through high school in Karratha and who both now have successful careers. Tara-Sky leads the physiotherapy department of Stawell Regional Hospital and Treya, who obtained a PhD in exercise physiology at UWA, works with Fiona Wood at Perth Children’s Hospital. Peter’s interests include walking, reading, boating, swimming, cycling, politics and music.