Australia Geography - 2021


SOURCE: 2021 CIA WORLD FACTBOOK

GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES  Spanish Simplified Chinese French German Russian Hindi Arabic Portuguese

Location

Oceania, continent between the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific Ocean

Geographic coordinates

27 00 S, 133 00 E

Map references

Oceania

Area

total: 7,741,220 sq km

land: 7,682,300 sq km

water: 58,920 sq km

note: includes Lord Howe Island and Macquarie Island

country comparison to the world: 7

Area - comparative

slightly smaller than the US contiguous 48 states

Land boundaries

total: 0 km

Coastline

25,760 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate

generally arid to semiarid; temperate in south and east; tropical in north

Terrain

mostly low plateau with deserts; fertile plain in southeast

Elevation

highest point: Mount Kosciuszko 2,228 m

lowest point: Lake Eyre -15 m

mean elevation: 330 m

Natural resources

alumina, coal, iron ore, copper, tin, gold, silver, uranium, nickel, tungsten, rare earth elements, mineral sands, lead, zinc, diamonds, natural gas, petroleum; note - Australia is the world's largest net exporter of coal accounting for 29% of global coal exports

Land use

agricultural land: 52.9% (2018 est.)

arable land: 11.6% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.09% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 88.4% (2018 est.)

forest: 16.2% (2018 est.)

other: 30.9% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

25,460 sq km (2014)

Total renewable water resources

492 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Population distribution

population is primarily located on the periphery, with the highest concentration of people residing in the east and southeast; a secondary population center is located in and around Perth in the west; of the States and Territories, New South Wales has, by far, the largest population; the interior, or "outback", has a very sparse population

Natural hazards

cyclones along the coast; severe droughts; forest fires

volcanism: volcanic activity on Heard and McDonald Islands

Environment - international agreements

party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 2006, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note

note 1: world's smallest continent but sixth-largest country; the largest country in Oceania, the largest country entirely in the Southern Hemisphere, and the largest country without land borders; the only continent without glaciers; the invigorating sea breeze known as the "Fremantle Doctor" affects the city of Perth on the west coast and is one of the most consistent winds in the world

note 2: the Great Dividing Range that runs along eastern Australia is that continent’s longest mountain range and the third-longest land-based range in the world; the term "Great Dividing Range" refers to the fact that the mountains form a watershed crest from which all of the rivers of eastern Australia flow – east, west, north, and south

NOTE: The information regarding Australia on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Australia 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Australia 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.