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May 5, 2008

Wikipedia: Queensland

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Coordinates: 23°0′S, 143°0′E

Queensland
Flag of  Queensland Coat of Arms of  Queensland
Flag Coat of Arms
Slogan or Nickname: Sunshine State, Smart State
Motto(s): “Audax at Fidelis” (Bold but Faithful)
Map of Australia with  Queensland highlighted
Other Australian states and territories
Capital Brisbane
Government Constitutional monarchy
Governor Quentin Bryce
Premier Anna Bligh (ALP)
Federal representation
– House seats 28
– Senate seats 12
Gross State Product (2004-05)
– Product ($m) $158 506 (3rd)
– Product per capita $40,170/person (6th)
Population (End of June 2007)
– Population 4,182,100 (3rd)
– Density 2.42/km² (5th)
6.3 /sq mi
Area
– Total 1,852,642 km² (2nd largest)
715,309 sq mi
– Land 1,730,648 km²
668,207 sq mi
– Water 121,994 km² (6.58%)
47,102 sq mi
Elevation
– Highest Mt. Bartle Frere
+1,622 m (5,321 ft)
– Lowest
Time zone UTC+10 no DST
Abbreviations
– Postal QLD
ISO 3166-2 AU-QLD
Emblems
– Faunal Koala
(Phascolarctos cinereus)
– Floral Cooktown orchid
(Dendrobium bigibbum)
– Bird Brolga (Grus rubicunda)
– Aquatic Barrier Reef Anemonefish
(Amphiprion akindynos)
– Gem Sapphire
– Colours Maroon
Web site www.qld.gov.au

Queensland is a state of Australia, occupying the north-eastern corner of the mainland continent. It is bordered by the Northern Territory to the west, South Australia to the south-west and New South Wales to the south. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean. The state is Australia’s second largest by area, following Western Australia, and the country’s third most populous after New South Wales and Victoria.

The area was first colonised by Indigenous Australians and Torres Strait Islanders, who arrived between 40,000 and 65,000 years ago, according to various dating methods.[1] Later, Queensland was made a British Crown Colony that was separated from New South Wales on 6 June 1859, a date now celebrated annually as Queensland Day. The area that currently forms Brisbane was originally the Moreton Bay penal colony, intended as a place for recidivist convicts who had offended while serving out their sentences in New South Wales. The state later encouraged free settlement, and today Queensland’s economy is dominated by the agricultural, tourist and natural resource sectors.

The population is concentrated in the south-east corner, which includes the capital Brisbane, Logan City, Ipswich, Toowoomba, and the Gold and Sunshine Coasts. Other major regional centres include Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Hervey Bay and Mount Isa. Queensland is often nicknamed the Sunshine State, since it enjoys warm weather and a sizeable portion of the state is in the tropics. The people of Queensland are colloquially known as ‘Banana Benders’ or ‘Canetoads’, the former possibly due to the large Banana plantations in the tropics, the latter a reference born of the environmental disaster occurring when the cane toad was imported to rid the sugar cane fields of cane beetle pest. This is often referred to during the ‘State of Origin’, an annual Rugby League competition between Queensland and fierce rivals New South Wales.

Queensland cities, towns, settlements and road network

Queensland cities, towns, settlements and road network

Contents

Etymology

The state was named in honour of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom,[2] who, in 1859, signed the proclamation separating the state from New South Wales. At the time, Victoria was a generally popular monarch, and the successful name was preferred over Cooksland, which was suggested by the influential local Presbyterian minister John Dunmore Lang.[3] It is noteworthy that the state of Victoria is also named after her.

Geography

  • The state’s borders are defined as:
    • North The northernmost part of the state is the Torres Strait with Boigu Island off the coast of New Guinea representing the absolute northern extreme of Queensland’s territory. The triangular Cape York Peninsula, which points toward New Guinea is the northernmost part of the state’s mainland. The western side of the peninsula is washed by the Gulf of Carpentaria, while its eastern side borders the Coral Sea, an arm of the Pacific Ocean.
    • East The eastern border is the Pacific Ocean
    • West To the west, Queensland is bordered by the Northern Territory, at the 138° E. longitude, and to the south-west by the north-eastern corner of South Australia.
    • South by New South Wales. This border has three sections:
      • The watershed from Point Danger to the Dumaresq River
      • The river section involving the Dumaresq, the MacIntyre and the Barwon
      • The 29° S. latitude, over to the South Australian border.
  • State capital Brisbane, is located on the coast 100 kilometres (60 mi) by road north of the New South Wales border.
  • The fifth-largest city by area in the world, Mount Isa, is located in Queensland. The city area is in excess of 40,000 square kilometres (15,400 sq mi).
  • The state is divided into several officially recognised regions (see Regions of Queensland). Other smaller geographical regions of note include:
    • the Atherton Tablelands
    • the Granite Belt
    • the Channel Country in the far south-west
  • Queensland has many places of natural beauty, including:
    • the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast having some of the state’s most popular beaches
    • the Bunya Mountains and the Great Dividing Range with numerous lookouts, waterfalls and picnic areas
    • Carnarvon Gorge
    • Whitsunday Islands and Hinchinbrook Island.
  • The state contains five World Heritage listed preservation areas.
    • Australian Fossil Mammal Sites at Riversleigh in the Gulf Country
    • Central Eastern Rainforest Reserves
    • Fraser Island
    • Great Barrier Reef
    • Wet Tropics of Queensland

Highest maximum temperature: 49.5 °C (121.1 °F), Birdsville, 24 December 1972 (The temperature of 53.1 °C (127.5 °F) at Cloncurry on 16 January 1889 is not considered official, the figure quoted from Birdsville is the next highest, so that record is considered as being official).

Lowest minimum temperature: -11.0 °C (12.2 °F), Stanthorpe, 4 July 1895 [1]

Gold Coast CBD, The Gold Coast is the second largest city in Queensland

Gold Coast CBD, The Gold Coast is the second largest city in Queensland

Brisbane CBD, Brisbane is not only the largest city in Queensland but also the capital

Brisbane CBD, Brisbane is not only the largest city in Queensland but also the capital

Demographics

Queensland has a less centralised population than other states, with significant populations in regional cities such as Cairns

Queensland has a less centralised population than other states, with significant populations in regional cities such as Cairns

A smaller proportion of Queensland’s population lives in the capital city than any other mainland state. At 30 June 2004 the capital city represented 45.7% of the population; for the whole country, capital cities represented 63.8% of the total population.

  • Christian: 70.9%:
    • Roman Catholic: 24.9%
    • Anglican: 22.3%
    • Uniting Church: 8.4%
    • Lutheran: 2.1%
    • Other: 13.2%
  • Non-Christian: 2.3%
    • Buddhism: 1.1%
    • Islam: 0.4%
    • Hinduism: 0.3%
    • Judaism: 0.1%
    • Other: 0.4%
  • No Religion: 14.8%
  • Not Stated: 12.0%

On Friday, 9 December 2005 the population of Queensland officially reached 4 million. Queensland is the fastest growing state in Australia, with over 1500 people moving to the state per week; 1000 in the southern part of the state alone. Predictions show that Queensland will become Australia’s second most populous state by the late 2020s. [4]

Economy

Glitz and palm trees.

Glitz and palm trees.

Queensland’s economy has enjoyed a boom in the tourism and mining industries over the last twenty years. A sizeable influx of interstate and overseas migrants, large amounts of federal government investment, increased mining of vast mineral deposits and an ever expanding aerospace sector ensure that the state will remain Australia’s fastest growing economy in the foreseeable future.

Between 1992 and 2002, the growth in the Gross State Product of Queensland outperformed that of all the other states and territories. In that period Queensland’s GSP grew 5.0% each year, while growth in Australia’s GDP rose on average 3.9% each year. Queensland’s contribution to the Australian GDP also increased (by 10.4%) in that period, one of only three states to do so. [2]

In 2003 Brisbane city had the lowest cost of living of all Australia’s capital cities. As of late 2005 Brisbane is the third most expensive capital for housing after Sydney and Canberra and just ahead of Melbourne by $15,000.

Primary industries include: bananas, pineapples, peanuts, a wide variety of other tropical and temperate fruit and vegetables, grain crops, wineries, cattle raising, cotton, sugar cane, wool and a mining industry including bauxite, coal, silver, lead, zinc, gold, and copper.[citation needed]

Secondary industries are mostly further processing of the above-mentioned primary produce: bauxite from Weipa is converted to alumina at Gladstone. There are also copper refining and the refining of sugar cane to sugar.[citation needed]

Major tertiary industries are the retail trade and tourism.[citation needed]

Tourism

Airlie Beach

Airlie Beach

Tourism is Queensland’s leading tertiary industry with millions of interstate and overseas visitors flocking to the Sunshine State each year. Queensland is a state of many contrasts that range from sunny tropical coastal areas, lush rainforests to dry inland areas.

The main tourist destinations of Queensland include –

Hervey Bay

Hervey Bay

  • Gold Coast
  • Sunshine Coast
  • Hervey Bay/Fraser Island
  • Brisbane
  • Whitsundays (Airlie Beach, Whitehaven Beach, Hamilton Island, Daydream Island)
  • Far North Queensland (Cairns, Port Douglas,The Daintree)
  • North Queensland (Townsville, Magnetic Island)
  • North Stradbroke Island and South Stradbroke Island
  • The Great Barrier Reef

Theme parks

Crocodile show at the Australia Zoo

Crocodile show at the Australia Zoo

The Gold Coast of Queensland is also sometimes referred to as “Australia’s Theme Park Capital”, with five major amusement parks –

  • Dreamworld
  • Movie World
  • Sea World
  • Wet ‘n’ Wild
  • WhiteWater World

There are also wildlife parks in Queensland – Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary on the Gold Coast and Australia Zoo on the Sunshine Coast (home of Steve Irwin until his death on 4 September 2006).

Weather & Climate

Whitehaven beach on Whitsunday Island

Whitehaven beach on Whitsunday Island

Due to the size of Queensland, there is significant variation in climate across the state. Low rainfall and hot summers are typical for the inland west, a monsoonal ‘wet’ season in the far north, and warm temperate conditions along the coastal strip. Inland and in southern ranges low minimum temperatures are experienced.

The climate of the coastal strip is influenced by warm ocean waters, keeping the region free from extremes of temperature and provide moisture for rainfall.[5]

There are five predominate climatic zones in Queensland[6], based on temperature and humidity:

  • hot humid summer (far north and coastal)
  • warm humid summer (coastal elevated hinterlands and coastal south-east)
  • hot dry summer, mild winter (central west)
  • hot dry summer, cold winter (southern west)
  • temperate – warm summer, cold winter (inland south-east, e.g. Granite Belt)

However, most of the Queensland populace experience two weather seasons: a “winter” period of rather warm temperatures and minimal rainfall and a sultry summer period of hot, sticky temperatures and higher levels of rainfall.

The annual mean statistics[7] for some Queensland centres is shown below:

City Min. Temp oC Max. Temp oC No. Clear Days Rainfall (mm)
Brisbane 14 26 123 1061
Mackay 18 27 113 1667
Cairns 20 29 86 2223
Longreach 15 31 220 434

Statistics

Queensland is the second most popular overnight holiday destination in Australia for domestic travellers ($10.9 billion per year) with New South Wales (NSW) taking the honours for 2006. Holidays in Queensland comprised of 18 754 000 combined visitor nights (23% Australian Market) with more than 60% of these room nights by residents from NSW and Victoria. Day visitors also contributed a further $2.5 billion.[citation needed]

The Sunshine Coast ($1.4 billion) and Tropical North Queensland ($1.3 billion) where Australia’s most visited regional areas for overnight and day visitors (excluding major cities and the Gold Coast).

The highest average overnight expenditure is in the Whitsundays ($1 295 per person per night)

Accommodation in Queensland caters for nearly 22% of the total expenditure, followed by restaurants / meals 15%, airfares 11%, fuel 11% and shopping / gifts 11% [8]

Landmarks

The view from Q1 over the Gold Coast

The view from Q1 over the Gold Coast

The Q1, located on the Gold Coast, is the tallest residential tower in the world, when measured to the top of its spire. It was completed in September 2005.

The statue of Wally Lewis, at the northern end of Suncorp Stadium (formerly known as Lang Park) is visited by Rugby League enthusiasts from around the world.

Transport

Queensland is served by a number of National Highways and, particularly in South East Queensland, high quality motorways such as the M1. Rail services are provided by Queensland Rail and Pacific National, predominantly along the coamajor ports including the Port of Brisbane and subsidiary ports at Gladstone and Townsville. The Brisbane Airport, Gold Coast Airport and Cairns International Airport are the main gateways into the State from overseas, with domestic airports at Maroochydore, Rockhampton south and elsewhere.

South-East Queensland is governed by an integrated public transport system, TransLink, which provides bus, rail and ferry services. Regional bus and long-distance rail services are also provided throughout the State.

Government

Main article: Government of Queensland
The Parliament of Queensland in Brisbane

The Parliament of Queensland in Brisbane

Executive authority is vested in the Governor, who represents and is appointed by Queen Elizabeth II on the advice of the Premier. The current Governor is Ms Quentin Bryce, AC. The head of government is the Premier, who is appointed by the Governor but must have the support of the Legislative Assembly. The current Premier is the Hon Anna Bligh, of the Australian Labor Party. Other Ministers, forming the Executive Council, are appointed by the Governor from among the members of the Legislative Assembly on the Premier’s recommendation.

The Queensland State Parliament, known as the Queensland Parliament or the Legislative Assembly, is unicameral. It is the only Australian state with a unicameral legislature. A bicameral system existed until 1922, when the Legislative Council was abolished by the Labor members’ “suicide squad,” so called because they were appointed for the purpose of voting to abolish their own offices.

The judicial system of Queensland consists of the Supreme Court and the District Court, established by the Queensland Constitution, and various other Courts and Tribunals established by ordinary Acts of the Queensland Parliament.

In 2001 Queensland adopted a new codified constitution, repealing most of the assorted Acts that had previously made up the constitution. The new constitution took effect on 6 June 2002, the anniversary of the formation of the colony of Queensland by the signing of Letters Patent by Queen Victoria in 1859.

History

Kanaka labourers on a plantation in the 1890s

Kanaka labourers on a plantation in the 1890s

Main article: History of Queensland

The history of Queensland spans thousands of years, encompassing both a lengthy indigenous presence, as well as the eventful times of post-European settlement. Estimated to have been settled by Indigenous Australians approximately 40,000 years ago, the north-eastern Australian region was explored by Dutch, Portuguese and French navigators before being encountered by Captain James Cook in 1770. The state has witnessed the tragic events of frontier warfare between European settlers and Indigenous inhabitants, as well as the employment of cheap Kanaka labour sourced from the South Pacific. Likewise, it has experienced dynamic growth and progress since its separation from New South Wales in 1859,

Sister states

Queensland has one sister state:

  • Flag of South Carolina South Carolina, United States of America[9]

Universities

The Great Court of the University of Queensland

The Great Court of the University of Queensland

Bond University in Robina

Bond University in Robina

  • University of Queensland
  • Bond University
  • Central Queensland University
  • James Cook University
  • University of Southern Queensland
  • University of the Sunshine Coast
  • Griffith University
  • Queensland University of Technology
  • Australian Catholic University (Brisbane campus)

See also

  • Governors of Queensland
  • Local Government Areas of Queensland
  • List of Queenslanders
  • Premiers of Queensland
  • Protected areas of Queensland (Australia)
  • Regions of Queensland
  • List of highways in Queensland
  • Queensland Council of Unions
  • List of schools in Queensland
  • Sport in Queensland
  • Queensland Expatriate Awards
  • Queensland Day
  • Queensland Police
This text comes from Wikipedia. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikipedia.

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