Flinders Island is the largest island among the Furneaux Group in Bass Strait. It is situated in the north-eastern lean of Tasmania, Australia and 12 kilometers away from Cape Portland. Flinders Island is a part of Tasmania state and Municipality of Flinders Island. It is one of the many islands situated in Municipal region. However, among the many islands within the Municipal region, only Flinders Island has stable settlements making it prevalent in Furneaux Group. Flinders Island has mild and maritime climate with world-class renewable energy resources such as solar, tidal and wind. It is a home for rural industries such as fishing, agriculture and tourism.
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Exploration of geographical topographies and environmental features
The total population of Flinders Island based on 2005 census report was 897. The main settlements in Finland Island comprise of Whitemark with 170 residents, Lady Barron with 130 residents, Killiecrankie, Memana, Blue Rocks, Leeka, Palana, Wybalenna, Lughrata, Ranga and Wingaroo.
In the 18th century, Flinders Island held Aboriginal women and sealers who were brought in the island after being kidnapped by white settlers. After the collapse of seal stocks, the sealers families decided to remain in Furneaux Group depending mainly on trade where they sold their birds and cattle. Proper settlement in Flinders Island took place after freehold land was given out in the year 1950s. Settlers from central New South Wales and Tasmania were drawn to Flinders Island’s eastern shore.
There is an Important Bird Area lying in the northern and eastern parts of Whitemark. About 30 km2 of land in the northern part contains three proliferation colonies of endangered Forty-spotted Pardalote and Flame Robins (Giblin 1928, p. 110). There are also rife bird variety in the area such as Yellow-throated Honeyeater, Tasmanian Thornbill, Green Rosella, Dusky Robin, Strong-billed Honeyeater, Black Currawong and Black-headed Honeyeater. About 187kilometeres of land in the eastern part sustains Hooded Plovers, Fairy Terns and a small percentage of Pied Oystercatchers, Chestnut Teal and Sooty Oystercatchers.
The coastal part of Flinders Island is covered in shrubs/scrub. There is green vegetation consisting of eucalyptus species. There are more than 800 plant varieties present in Furneaux Group bringing out the immense biodiversity of Flinders Island’s ecological unit. The animal species present in the region include: Tasmanian Pademelon (Thylogale billardierii), Bennett’s Wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus), Cape Fur Seal (Arctocephalus pusillus), Cape Barren Goose (Cereopsis novaehollandiae), Common Ringtail Possum (Pseudocheirus peregrinus), Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula), Potoroo (Potorous apicalis), Eastern Pygmy Possum (Cercartetus nanus), and Short-tailed Shearwater (Puffinus tenuirostris). There is a national park known as Strzelecki National Park on the south western part of the island. This national park surrounds Mount Strzelecki. There are also a large number of feral turkeys in the coastal part of Flinders Island.
Flinders Island is approximately 37km from east to west and 62km from north to south. The island covers a total of 1,333 kilometers of land area. The highest peak of the island is in the south west part where Mount Strzelecki is located with a total height of 756m. A third of Flinders Island is rocky and mountainous. There are crests of granite which runs the islands length. The coastal regions of the island are subjugated by sandy places with mound shape. There are coastal lagoons in the island which intersperse the eastern shore created by the dunes causing a blockage of the drainage. There are small streams flowing towards Bass Strait drainage; they are the major source of drainage in the coastal region.
There are remarkable mountains in the island with beautiful scenery which offers people with a good experience during the holidays. The main recreational regions in Flinders Island are: the luminous beaches, lucid sapphire waters, craggy ranges and plentiful wildlife and plants. The climate in Flinders Island is favorable all through the year enabling activities such as mountain climbing, boat riding and fishing. Killiecrankie Diamond is a geological treasure for the people living in the island. The residents of Flinders Island have a unique lifestyle with strong values and attitudes mainly related to their cultural and natural setting.
Flinders Island is covered with Next G network. There are however some regions which do not have good network reception such as Blue Rocks, Palana, Pigs Head Point (near Trousers Point) and Killiecrankie. Those people living in these regions must have in possession compatible Telstra Next G mobile to be able to have network coverage (Pip 2005, p. 205). Additional Next G mobiles which are not coupled to other haulers alongside Digital mobile and Telstra phones have no network coverage in the region.
A large number of housing properties in Flinders Island are in possession of landline telephones network. They are however normally excluded from making outside calls. They are however allowed to receive calls from anywhere. In Whitemark Airport, Lady Barron and Killiecrankie, there are public phones which are accessible to anyone. Most residents of Flinders Island utilise UHF radios while driving and in their boats. The local people and the tourists in Flinders Island can have the right to use internet services from Service Tasmania or Online Access Centre which are both found in Whitemark. There are computers in the regions which have printers and internet which can be used by the entire community.
There are both potted and unspotted roads in Flinders Island which are roughly 450km and appropriate for use by 2WD vehicles. These roads lead to main townships, beaches and various lookouts. It is however dangerous to drive in the morning and evening on the roads. This is because a large number of island wildlife normally comes to the shores to look for food on the rim of the roads. Therefore, every driver is recommended to be cautious and drive slowly in the morning and evening hours. There are however no public transport in Flinders Island. There is only one taxi used by everyone hence they usually recommend visitors to hire their own vehicles that they will use during their stay in Flinders Island.
There are Sharp Airlines which functions around Flinders Island, Launceston and Essendon. The airlines have Metroliners with 18 seat and makes 3 return flights within one hour in a week between Essendon Airport and Flinders Island Airport while takes 30minutes to travel from Launceston Airport to Flinders Island Airport. There are ferry services offered by Southern Shipping Co from Tasmania, Port Victoria, Port Welshpool and Bridport.
There is no hydrogeology in Flinders Island. There are boreholes and gas and oil pipelines. The people living in Flinders Island practice groundwater usage hence the reason why they are extra cautious on maintaining their bore holes.
Data Collection of Natural Resource Suitability and choice of technology
The climate at Flinders Island is moderated by the sea. Furneaux Islands have a cold weather as compared to Melbourne during the summer period and hot during winter period. There are more sunny days in Flinders Island as compared to Gold Coast. Bloating from outlying oceanic storms has vivid effects on the Trousers Point of peninsulas located on the east and northern parts of the island. Wind is common in Flinders. However, it is less windy as compared to other western islands located in Tasmania. During spring season, there are lots of winds since that is the peak period for Roaring Forties.
The average annual temperatures in Flinders Island is 10 to 18°C (50 to 64 °F) while the average temperatures in January is 13 to 22 °C (60 to 71 °F). The average temperature in July is 6 to 13 °C (43 to 56 °F). Days when the temperatures are over 30 °C (86 °F) is 4.8 while the days when they are over 35 °C (95 °F) is 0.8. On the other hand, the days when the temperatures are less than 2 °C (35.6 °F) is 21.1 while the days when they are under 0 °C (32 °F) is 5.6. The annual rainfall in Flinders Island is 754mm (29.7 inches). The average Annual Wind speed is 21–25 km/h (13–15 mi/h).
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|Climate data for Flinders Island Airport.|
|Average high °C (°F)||22.0 |
|Average low °C (°F)||13.3 |
|Precipitationmm (inches)||46.2 |
|Source: Bureau of Meteorology.|
Flinders Island has got world class tidal and wind flowreso urces. They have sufficient and mature technologies which are used to capture wind energy (Finders 1814, 102). However, tidal flow technologies are in the process of developing; they have not fully matured. Funding towards abstraction of wave energy is currently going on in Flinders Island. There are biomass and solar resources in Flinders Island including waste-to-energy that produce power and reduce carbon footprint in the island.
Despite the high use of diesel whose costs have rapidly risen due to high demand, there are also renewable energy systems that have been designed in Flinders Island to help save energy used for different purposes. There is wind-mini hydro solution which is used for pumping sea water for storage; there is also wind-biodiesel solution which has battery and other enabling technologies. Lastly, there is wind-cable solution which is used to connect Flinders Island to Tasmanian mainland
Simulation of the renewable system
Other proposed methods and alterations to current energy system in Flinders Island include the use of Greenhouse Gas Minisation which reduce emissions of greenhouse gas and improves opportunities for carbon sequestration, waste management practices and biodiversity enhancements.
This is a scenario whereby the total consumption of electricity annual in the year 2030 is rounded up higher by 73% reaching over 11,500 MWh every year. There is no significant investment made in the renewable energy while diesel consumption rate by 2030 goes higher by 3ml and coupled with over 8,000 t CO2-e of greenhouse gas emissions. The total cost today is $ 4.3 million and $ 3, 150 per person.
Longford is located in the north-eastern part of Tasmania, Australia and lies 175m high above sea level where the South Esk River and Macquarie River converge. The town is 21kilometers far south of Launceston and south of Illawarra Road where Midland Highways and Bass connect. Based on 2006 census, the total population of Longford city is 4,266. Longford city is part of Northern Midlands Council region and it is leading in dairy and agriculture produce, stock reproduction and wool. Longford city was mainly made for trout and characterised by cooler climate and hundreds of lakes.
Exploration of geographical topographies and environmental features
Before the Europeans settled in Longford, the area was mainly occupied by Panninher band. In 1807, the settlers started to arrive in the region. They came in as farmers and later moved to Van Diemen from Norfolk Island. The settlers were given lands by Governor Macquarie. Initially the town was labeled as Latour but it later increased in population size which led to renaming it to Longford in the year 1833. The colonists began to construct real estates and excellent houses in the region. Archer family among other families built several estates and grand houses in the region. In 1856, Norfolk Plains Post Office was renamed Longford.
According to 2006 census, most residents in Longford city got employment in several industries. There are several recreational areas in the region such as memorial park and Woodstock Lagoon Wildlife Sanctuary which lays and raise waterfowl haven. Trout fishing also takes place in the region. There are golf club regions in the south of the town.
There are many historic buildings in Longford district on Tasmanian Heritage Register and they include; Christ Church which was constructed in 1839, there is Blenheim Hotel which was constructed in 1846, Racecourse Hotel, Queen’s Arms Hotel and Tattersalls Hotel (Hiscock 2008, p.210).
There are several facilities in Longford city apart from historical buildings and they include: supermarkets, two banks, Service Tasmania shop, hotels, antique shops, service stations, bakery, take-aways, butcher’s shop and cafes. There are also big primary and nursery schools in the region where children get their education. There is a sport center in Longford city and bowls club. The students are transported to school using buses owned by two local companies in the city. There is a public library in the city which is opened mainly on the weekday. Doctors and dentists are present in Longford city to offer healthcare to the people in the region. Private healthcare is provided by Toosey Memorial Hospital. This hospital is also a residential care center where elderly people are taken care of.
Data Collection of Natural Resource Suitability and choice of technology
Langford city has temperate climate due to the large mountains and hills surrounding the region. There are four different seasons which usually changes after a short period of time. January and February are the warmest months in Langford with standardised air temperatures of 12.2 °C (54 °F) up to 24.4 °C (76 °F). In the course of each year, Langford must experience temperatures over 30 °C (86 °F) for a period of 3 to 4 days. In January 2009, the area recorded a maximum temperature of 39 °C (102 °F).
During winter period, the temperatures are cool with the minimum readings being below 2 °C (36 °F) and this can be recorded for an average of 61 days each year. July is the coolest month in Langford with an average range of temperatures between 2.2 °C (36 °F) to 12.5 °C (54 °F). Rarely does Langford experience snowfall. During winter period, the winds are not too many in Langford and this is due to topographical effects. However, during the winter period, there are renowned fogs in the morning hours in Langford. The average amount of rainfall in the region is 665 mm (26 in) which falls at an average of 88.4 days annually (Peter 2007, p. 125).
The average solar irradiation in Langford is 3.80 kWz/m²/day while the average wind speed in the region is 4.00m/s. On the other hand, the average earth temperature in Langford city is 12.68 °C with humidity of an average of 73.90 while the air pressure is 99.12 kPa. The minimum monthly average wind speed in Langford city is 3.4m/s while the maximum monthly average wind speed in the region is 4.6m/s. The minimum monthly average air temperatures in Langford city is 6.8 °C while the maximum monthly average air temperature is 16.8 °C. The average daily module output for the solar is 779Wh while the minimum daily solar energy output in Langford is 289Wh. The Maximum monthly average output of solar in the region is 1283 while the average annual output of the solar panel is 284kWh.
Simulation of the renewable system
Energy matters a lot in Langford city which has the largest networks when it comes to accredited installers present in Australia. It is well known for being the chief producer of renewable energy in the entire region and the whole of Australia. Langford is well known for its excellent hydro electricity system. It also has one of the best wind farms in the entire world. Some of the renewable systems that are currently present in Langford city include: wind energy and hydro power.
The recently proposed renewable energy in Langford, Tasmania include wind energy which will be used in the wind farm. It will provide 129MW additional power to the state. Transmission line will be constructed to enable the wind to connect to wind farm. Wind turbine generators will be installed to help in the project.
Geothermal energy was also proposed since it has the power needed to generate and give out large amount of free, protract and renewable energy on steady and reasonable grounds. The energy will be used for drilling because it produces surface heat flow (Gough 2005, p. 126). The geothermal development is expected to contain high voltage transmission power. The costs for connecting the electricity grid are also expected to be high. Wave and tidal are also some of the proposed projects to be constructed in Langford for renewable energy. Many companies in Langford city are mainly interested in this project because of its high voltage transmission.
The Integrated Renewable Energy Project in Langford city is another project that was proposed. It is believed that after its completion, it will provide 65 percent of electricity required for use in the region. The initial stage for this project is complete. The only part remaining is the fixing the solar panels for tracking. This is usually linked with gears of 100kilowatts capacity with regularity control systems which are resistive to aid in easing wind energy usage. It was also proposed that an additional 2MW of wind generation capacity be included in the Integrated Renewable Energy Project to enable storage of energy in the systems. The solar panels and the turbines generate excess energy which needs to be stored.
Bioenergy was the final renewable energy project that was proposed in Langford city. This is because it will provide an opportunity to develop and utilise waste as a source of energy. Landfill gas plants are mainly responsible for production of the energy to be used. Companies such as Australian Gas Light Company produce an average of 2.6 MW of electricity to be used for different purposes. There are some businesses in Langford city which are responsible for the production of biodiesel but in small quantities. They plan to use this energy in production to bring new supplies. Some companies such as Macquarie Oil have a scheme of utilising the waste oils to manufacture energy. The dissipated products obtained from Cradoc Hill Abattoirs and Longford are to be utilised in production of energy. They expect tremendous growth of the industry into a productive sector that will transform waste products into valuable fuel used by everyone.
In conclusion, all these projects proposed in Langford city will help reduce the cost and consumption of diesel in the region as most people will use the waste products, wind and geothermal power to produce energy.
Finders M 1814, Voyage to Terra Australia. Routledge Publishers: London.
Gough, J 2005, Entry for Oyster Cove in Alexander, Alison: The Companion to Tasmanian History, University of Tasmania: Tasmania.
Hiscock, P 2008, Archaeology of Ancient Australia, Routledge: London and New York.
Peter, J 2007, Anglican Parish of Longford-Perth, Anglican Church of Australia Missionary Diocese of Tasmania Publishers: Australia.
Pip, C 2005, Tasmanian Covenant: landline. Free Press: Australia.
Rose, G 1928, The Early History of Tasmania. University Press Oxford: Oxford.