Get to know the Australian Continent and the Causes of Deserts in Australia

Causes of Deserts in Australia – Australia is the smallest continent in the world. Australia is a country in the southern hemisphere consisting of the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and various small islands in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. This country has only one country, namely Australia. The territory of Australia is made up of diverse landscapes ranging from mountains to deserts. Australia is a developed and prosperous country. Australia is the 13th largest economy in the world.

In addition Australia ranks high in many comparisons of performance across nations such as development, quality of life, health care, life expectancy, general education, civil liberties, and political rights. Australia is a member of the United Nations, major G20 Economies, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, AUKUS, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, Pacific Islands Forum, and the World Trade Organization.


As reported by Geoscience Australia, Australia is the driest continent in the world. About 35 percent of the continent’s total receives little rain. Australia’s deserts are scattered throughout the western highlands and lowlands. Based on sources from a book entitled “World Regional Geography” in 2020 written by Sulistinah and Kuspriyanto, the location of the Australian Continent is in the south of the Asian continent.

Astronomically this continent is located between approximately 11°S-44°S and approximately 115°E-153°E. Australia’s area reaches about 7,682,300 km² or only about 5.2% of the world’s land area. Australia has a coastline of 34,218 km (excluding islands off the coast of the continent), and a recognized extension of the Exclusive Economic Zone of 8,148,250 km². This exclusive economic zone does not include the Australian Antarctic Territory. Excluding Macquarie Island, Australia is located between 9° S, and 44° S, and 112° E, and 154° E.

Australia’s climate is strongly influenced by ocean currents, including the Indian Ocean Dipole and the El-Niño Southern Oscillation which are correlated with periodic droughts and the seasonal tropical low pressure system that generates cyclones in northern Australia. The factors that affect rainfall vary from year to year. Most of the north of the country has a predominantly tropical, or monsoon, summer rainy climate.

Underneath three-quarters of Australia lies a desert or less fertile zone. Western Australia’s Southwest Corner has a Mediterranean climate. Much of the southeast (including Tasmania) has a temperate climate. Although most of Australia is not very fertile and even a desert. But Australia has a wide variety of habitats from alpine meadows to tropical rainforests, and is recognized as a megadiverse country.

Due to the continent’s ancient age, highly variable weather patterns and geographical remoteness, much of Australia’s biota is unique, and diverse. Approximately 85% of flowering plants, 84% of mammals, more than 45% of birds, and 89% of nearshore, temperate zone fish are endemic. Australia has a large number of reptiles from other countries, as many as 755 species. The forests of Australia have mostly evergreen species, especially eucalyptus in fertile areas, acacia replaces them in drier areas, desert being the predominant species.

Among Australia’s fauna are the monotremes (platypus and echidna), a number of marsupials, kangaroos, koalas, wombats and birds (emu and kookaburra).

Australia is home to many dangerous animals including some of the most venomous snakes in the world. The dingo was introduced by Austronesian people who traded with native Australians around 3000 AD. Many species of plants and animals became extinct soon after the first human occupation, including the megafauna of Australia, others disappeared since European colonization, notably the Thylacine.

Many of Australia’s ecoregions, and species within those areas, are threatened by human activities, and animal or plant species introduced to Australia. The 1999 Federal Act on Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Reserves is a legal framework for the protection of endangered animals. Many protected areas have been created under the “National Strategy for the Protection of Australia’s Biodiversity” to protect, and conserve, a wide variety of unique ecosystems; 65 wetlands are registered under the Ramsar Convention, and 15 natural UNESCO World Heritage Sites have been established. Australia is ranked 51st out of 163 countries in the world on the 2010 Environmental Performance Index.

Aboriginal food is heavily influenced by the region in which they are located. Most tribal groups depended on a simple Paleolithic diet, hunting land animals or fish, and gathering endemic plants and fruits. The general term for the species of flora and fauna native to Australia and used as a source of food is bushfood . The first settlers from Europe introduced British food to the continent with many of what is now considered Australian fare, based on the Sunday roast, which has become a lasting tradition for many Australians. Since the early 20th century, food in Australia has become increasingly influenced by immigrants, particularly from Southern Europe, and Asian cultures.

Australian wine is produced in 60 different production areas, which total about 160 thousand hectares , mainly in the southern regions, the coldest parts of the country. The wine regions in each of these states produce different varieties and styles that take advantage of local climates and soil types. The dominant varieties are Syrah, Cabernet, Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Sémillon, Pinot noir, Riesling and Sauvignon blanc. In 1995, an Australian red wine, the Penfolds Grange , won the Wine Spectator award for “Wine of the Year”, being the first wine from outside France or California to achieve this award.

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Australian Boundaries

Australia is bounded by the following territorial boundaries:

  • To the north it is bordered by the Timor Sea (east Leste) and the Arafuru Sea (Indonesia).
  • To the north it is bordered by the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea.
  • To the west and south it is bordered by the Indian Ocean.

Quoted from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Australia is the driest continent in the world and has the largest desert area in the Southern Hemisphere. More than one third of the continent is effectively a desert and more than two thirds of the continent is classified as arid or semiarid. The desert is defined in the Big Indonesian Dictionary (KBBI) as a barren desert or desert.

Australian Economy

Australia follows a market economy system with a high GDP per capita and a low poverty rate. The Australian dollar is the currency of this country, including the islands of Christmas Island, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Norfolk Island, as well as the independent Pacific island nations of Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu. After in 200y the merger of the Australian Stock Exchange and the Sydney Futures Exchanges, now the Australian Stock Exchange is the 9th largest stock exchange in the world.

Ranked third in the 2010 Index of Economic Freedom, Australia is the 13th largest economy in the world, and also has the 9th largest per capita GDP in the world, higher than the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Canada, Japan and the United States. Union. Australia is also ranked second in the 2010 UN Human Development Index, and first in Legatum’s 2008 Prosperity Index.

All major cities in Australia are no longer subject to the world comparative livability survey, because they have exceeded the predetermined requirements; Melbourne reached the second place in The Economist’s 2008 criteria for the most liveable cities in the world, followed by Perth (4th), Adelaide (7th) and Sydney (9th). The total government debt in Australia is of $190 billion. Housing prices in Australia are among the highest, while some levels of household debt are among the highest in the world.

Strengthening commodity exports, over manufactured goods, has supported a significant increase in Australia’s trade ratio since the start of the century, due to rising commodity prices. Australia has a balance of payments greater than a negative 7% of GDP, and has had a current account deficit for more than 50 years. Australia’s average annual economic growth is 3.6% over 15 years, compared to the OECD’s annual average of 2.5%. Opinions differ as to whether or not Australia was one of the few OECD countries that avoided the slump in the 2008 economic crisis. Six of Australia’s major trading partners have experienced an economic downturn which has in turn affected Australia, and economic growth has constrained the country for several years.

In the 1980s, the Labor Party, led by Prime Minister Bob Hawke and Treasurer Paul Keating, began the process of modernizing the Australian economy by floating the dollar.

Australia in 1983, and regulate the financial system. Since 1996 the Howard government has continued a process of microeconomic reform, including deregulation of part of the labor market and the privatization of state-owned enterprises, especially the telecommunications industry. Substantial reform of the indirect tax system was achieved in July 2000 with the introduction of a 10% goods and services tax (GST) which reduced dependence somewhat on the personal and corporate income tax that still characterizes the Australian tax system.

The Australian economy has not experienced a recession since the early 1990s. In July 2005, unemployment was still around 5%. The service sector, including tourism, education and financial services makes up 69% of GDP. Agriculture, and natural resources make up only 3%, and 5% of GDP, but contribute a lot to Australia’s exports. Australia’s largest export markets include Japan, China, the US, South Korea and New Zealand. Things that concern economists include the budget deficit ( current account deficit ), as well as high levels of net foreign debt ( net foreign debt ).

In January 2007, the unemployment rate reached 10,033,480 people, at a rate of 5.1%. The youth unemployment rate (15-24) increased from 8.7% to 9.7% in 2008-2009. In the past decade, inflation was in the range of 2–3%, and base interest rates were 5–6%. The service sector economy, including tourism, education, and financial services, accounts for 70% of GDP. Although agriculture and natural resources account for only 3% and 5% of GDP (respectively), they contribute to export performance. Australia’s biggest export markets are Japan, China, the United States, South Korea and New Zealand. Australia is the world’s 4th largest exporter of wine, in an industry that contributes $5.5 billion annually to the national economy.



Australian Politics

Australia is a constitutional monarchy with a federative division of powers. Australia’s government follows a parliamentary system with Queen Elizabeth II at its apex, namely as Queen Australia, a role distinct from her position as queen to the rest of the Commonwealth of Nations. The Queen resides in the United Kingdom, and she is represented by delegates living in Australia, (the Governor-General at the federal level, and by the Governors at the state level), who by convention act on the advice of her ministers.

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Supreme executive authority rests with the Australian Constitution, but the power to exercise it is vested under the constitution to the Governor-General. The exercise of the Governor-General’s reserve powers against the request of the Prime Minister was the dissolution of the Whitlam Government during the 1975 constitutional crisis. In Australia there are three branches of government.

The Legislature of the Australian Parliament consists of the Governor-General, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Executive; Federal Executive Council; in practice it is the Governor-General who is advised by the Prime Minister and Ministers of State. judicial; Australian Supreme Court, and other federal courts whose judges are appointed by the Governor-General on the advice of the Council.

Australia has a bicameral parliament, each chamber being the Senate and the House of Representatives. In the Senate (upper house), there are 76 senators: namely from the six states each sent 12 representatives, while from the two territories each sent two representatives. The DPR (lower house of assembly) consists of 150 members who are elected from 150 electors, meaning that only one representative is sent from one electorate. Electorals (or seats as they are also called) are allocated to states on a population basis, provided that each original state is guaranteed a minimum of five seats.

Elections to each chamber are usually held synchronously every three years, senators have overlapping terms of six years, except for those from the territories, whose terms are not fixed but are tied to the cycle of elections for the lower house; thus only 40 of the 76 seats in the Senate run for election unless the election cycle is interrupted by a twin dissolving.

There are two main political groups that have traditionally formed government, at the federal and state levels: the Australian Labor Party, and the Coalition which is the official grouping of the Australian Liberal Party, and its minor counterpart, the Australian National Party. Independent members, and several minor parties, including the Australian Green Party, and the Australian Democratic Party, are represented in the Australian parliament, especially in the upper house.

Following the election for the leadership of the Australian Labor Party, in 2010, Julia Gillard became the first female Prime Minister in June 2010. Federal elections were held on 21 August 2010, and neither party has held an absolute majority in 50 years. Gillard was able to form a minority Labor government with the support of independents.



Desert in Australia

The National Climate Center, Australian Bureau of Meteorology, notes that worldwide, there is a belt of high pressure in the subtropics based on a latitude of about 30° (North and South), which results in dry conditions in areas near these latitudes. Australia’s dry conditions also occur in general eastward to North of this high pressure belt, except near the east coast of mainland Australia where it contains water vapor from the Pacific Ocean.

The continental interior is also remote, in all directions, from potential sources of moisture. For much of Australia, there is no clear demarcation between arid regions and areas with sufficient moisture. There is no water vapor in the Australian area, causing the area to become dry. Australia’s position is what makes Australia the main location of the desert. The following is a list of deserts in Australia.

The desert area that dominates the continent of Australia, is estimated to be around 1,492,000 km2 in area. In the middle of the lowland desert includes:

  • Great Victoria Desert (Western Australia, South Australia).
  • Tanami Desert (Western Australia, Northern Territory)
  • Great Sandy Desert (Western Australia)
  • Gibson Desert (Western Australia)
  • Simpson Desert (Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia)
  • Tirari Desert (South Australia)
  • Strzelecki Desert (South Australia, Queensland, New South Wales)

The Australian desert is often described as the land of immortals. Over the last 30 years, archaeological research and environmental history of Australia’s Quaternary deserts have revealed, not only their uniqueness but also their rich history. Therefore, it is not surprising that there are many unique plants and animals that only exist in Australia and are not found in other parts of the world.

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