Friday, September 24, 2021

The Queensland government has approved the AIRAH Professional Engineer Register (APER) program under its Professional Engineers Act 2002. Engineers working in HVAC&R and building services now have a dedicated pathway for being assessed and securing Registered Professional Engineer Qld (RPEQ) status.

The announcement comes as states and territories roll out professional registration schemes in line with the Building Confidence reforms. The first in Australia, Queensland’s scheme has been operating since 2002. Both New South Wales and Victoria began rolling out professional registration schemes on July 1, 2021. And Western Australia is developing a scheme for launch in late 2022.

After a rigorous application and review process, AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH, says the approval of the APER scheme is a win for the building industry in general, and for HVAC&R and building services engineers in particular.

“AIRAH strongly supports the efforts to introduce professional registration throughout the country,” Gleeson says. “Although other schemes are available for engineers, we saw the need for a program that specifically caters for those working in HVAC&R and building services.

“Professional registration schemes are only as good as the systems that assess the candidates. The bodies involved must have the skills and experience to review professionals in each specific area of engineering. The HVAC&R and building services industry has specialist knowledge and incorporates diverse engineering disciplines – and our assessors are experts in this field. We are also ideally placed to offer targeted continuing professional development for engineers to maintain their registration.”

As well as obtaining approval for the APER scheme in Queensland, AIRAH is in advanced stages of applying for APER to be accepted in Victoria. New South Wales is yet to open applications for new assessment schemes; however, AIRAH has signalled plans to apply to become a recognised professional engineering body. Holders of RPEQ status are eligible to apply for professional registration in New South Wales under mutual recognition laws. AIRAH is also providing input about HVAC&R and building services engineering to the Western Australia government as it seeks to establish a professional registration scheme.

“For AIRAH, this is an important first step in a longer journey that we are fully committed to,” Gleeson says. “With the framework of APER in place and approved in Queensland, we plan to expand the program across other jurisdictions and offer this pathway for HVAC&R and building services engineers throughout Australia.

“Our sector is developing in terms of our workforce and our impact on the environment. As Australia works towards achieving its net zero ambitions, AIRAH looks forward to creating an HVAC&R and building services industry that is highly skilled and professional, safe, sustainable and environmentally effective.”

For more information about AIRAH’s APER program, and to apply, go to