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The Tasmania Portal

Introduction

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Tasmania (/tæzˈmniə/; abbreviated as TAS) is an island state of Australia. It is located 240 km (150 mi) to the south of the Australian mainland, separated by Bass Strait. The state encompasses the main island of Tasmania, the 26th-largest island in the world, and the surrounding 334 islands. The state has a population of around 526,700 . Just over forty percent of the population resides in the Greater Hobart precinct, which forms the metropolitan area of the state capital and largest city, Hobart.

Tasmania's area is 68,401 km2 (26,410 sq mi), of which the main island covers 64,519 km2 (24,911 sq mi). It is promoted as a natural state, and protected areas of Tasmania cover about 42% of its land area, which includes national parks and World Heritage Sites. Tasmania was the founding place of the first environmental political party in the world.

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1663 map of Van Diemen's Land, showing the parts discovered by Tasman, including Storm Bay, Maria Island and Schouten Island.
Van Diemen's Land was the original name used by Europeans for the island of Tasmania, now part of Australia. The Dutch explorer Abel Tasman was the first European to explore Tasmania. He named the island Anthoonij van Diemenslandt in honour of Anthony van Diemen, Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies who had sent Tasman on his voyage of discovery in 1642.

In 1803, the island was colonised by the British as a penal colony with the name Van Diemen's Land. From the 1830s to the abolition of penal transportation (known simply as "transportation") in 1853, Van Diemen's Land was the primary penal colony in Australia. Following the suspension of transportation to New South Wales, all transported convicts were sent to in Van Diemen's Land. In total, some 75,000 convicts were transported to Van Diemen's Land, or about 40% of all convicts sent to Australia.

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In The News

  • Jan 11: The Airbus 3-19 has departed Hobart and arrived at Antarctica, making it the first successful plane flight to Antarctica in history.
  • Dec 29: The price of electricity will rise significantly in the new year, greatly disadvantaging hotels and restaurants, and in turn incurring higher goods and services costs for households.

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Southern Black Bream

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