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Alternative designs for Sydney Opera House. The Sydney Opera House turns 45 this year.

Alternative designs for Sydney Opera House

It is one of Australia’s favourite and most recognisable landmarks and people travel from all over the world to see it and take a selfie* in front of it. But it could have looked very, very different if any one of the other suggested ideas for its design was chosen. Talk of the famous building began in 1956 after then-Premier of NSW Joseph Cahill announced a global competition to build “a National Opera House at Bennelong Point, Sydney”. Architects could enter as many different drawings as they liked and their design didn’t have to fit a particular budget. The 223 entries included the unusual winning design by Jørn Utzon. Now you can imagine something else, with the help of computer-generated images of seven alternative designs that were in the running all those years ago. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

The computer-generated images in this story were originally published in a blog by Budget Direct on Sydney Opera House turns 45 2. What's happening to Australia's biodiversity? Some scientists believe that we are now witnessing the sixth mass extinction, the only mass extinction caused by a single species - humans.

What's happening to Australia's biodiversity?

Did megafauna that used to roam Australia become extinct because of climate change or because of hunting? How have population growth, habitat change and introduction of new species affected Australia's biodiversity? The river is like our refrigerator that keeps fresh the meat. The forest is like our drug store that has our medicines. It is like a supermarket with all of the food and things we need. Extinction. Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Australian Government. Cat-proof fence to protect Australian endangered animals in Newhaven Wildlife Sanctuary, NT. Thirty endangered rufous hare-wallabies have been released in Australia’s Central Desert into a sanctuary created as part of a project building the world’s longest cat-proof fence.

Cat-proof fence to protect Australian endangered animals in Newhaven Wildlife Sanctuary, NT

The last rufous hare-wallaby population in Central Australia became extinct in the 1990s. Some of the released animals had been saved in an emergency relocation after a bushfire elsewhere in 2017 and have been living in a temporary refuge ever since. Their new home is a 9500ha fenced sanctuary, which is stage one of a project managed by Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) to build the world’s biggest cat-proof fence. The fence is to keep out feral* cats to save dozens of endangered Australian animals from extinction.

But where is the green sheep? Old maps put the art in cartography. The national library's Trove digital service has been highlighting quirky old maps of the continent, starting with a 1920s graphic dividing the country up into the sheep haves and have-nots.

But where is the green sheep? Old maps put the art in cartography

Artist Judy Horacek, who illustrated Mem Fox's children's classic Where is the Green Sheep? , approved of the idea. For the record, Meat and Livestock Australia has this more modern take on the old sheep map, which is impressively precise — who knew there were only 167 head of sheep in the Northern Territory? — but not as charming. The sheep map was such a hit, Trove has been pointing out other old maps of Australia in their collection of more than 600,000. All of those sheep needed 'much grass' to graze on. World Heritage Places - Lord Howe Island Group. The Lord Howe Island Group - which comprises Lord Howe Island, Admiralty Islands, Mutton Bird Islands, Ball's Pyramid, and associated coral reefs and marine environments - has spectacular landscapes, including volcanic mountains, and diverse low-lying rainforests, palm forests and grasslands.

World Heritage Places - Lord Howe Island Group

There are a large number of species of native plants, of which many are endemic to Lord Howe Island, and colonies of endangered seabirds. Click an image for a larger view. Location Located 700 kilometres north-east of Sydney and covering an area of 1,463 km2, the Lord Howe Island Group comprises Lord Howe Island, Admiralty Islands, Mutton Bird Islands, Ball's Pyramid, and associated coral reefs and marine environments.

Description of place Nearly seven million years ago geologic movement of the Lord Howe Rise (an underwater plateau) gave birth to a large shield volcano on its western edge. This Is Australia - Great Southern Land. Latest population figures: Top 50 cities in Australia. This is the latest release of the Top 50 cities and towns in Australia, which we do every year, following the ABS release of their Regional Population Growth publication. As we’ve previously seen, Australia, already an urban nation, is adding more and more people to our capital cities, which accounted for 83% of population growth in the past year, and 77% of the past 5 years’ growth.

This view of the top 50 centres is a little different. There are centres in here (eg. Melton, Central Coast) which are considered part of the Greater Capital Cities, but which also stand alone as discrete centres in their own right. However most suburbs which are contiguously urban within our larger metropolitan areas are included in the population for that larger centre (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane etc.).

For reference, Australia overall has grown 1.4% in the past year, and 7.9% in 5 years. Physical map of New South Wales, Australia. Australia Map and Information, Map of Australia, Facts, Figures and Geography of Australia Test your geography knowledge - Australia: physical features quiz. Border Lengths - States and Territories. Reef facts. The Great Barrier Reef makes up about 10 per cent of the world's coral reef ecosystems, and is one of the best known and most complex natural systems on Earth.

Reef facts

It is the sea country home for the first Australians — more than 70 Traditional Owner groups — whose connections to the marine environment date back more than 60,000 years. Today the Reef is a Marine Park and World Heritage Area, supporting a range of commercial activities and attracting millions of visitors each year who come to enjoy its beauty above and below the water. The Great Barrier Reef is an economic powerhouse, contributing more than $5.6 billion each year to the Australian economy and around 70,000 jobs. Largest Waterbodies. Gordon Dam, Tasmania.

Largest Waterbodies

Photo courtesy Cam Botherway Australia is not well endowed with natural lakes containing plentiful supplies of water. Both rainfall and runoff can be highly variable across the continent and many rivers have dams containing large reservoirs constructed on them to meet water and power supply needs. The most significant water management project undertaken in Australia is the Snowy Mountains scheme which includes 16 large dams. Australia’s Geographic Features.

Highest Mountains. The highest mountains on the Australian mainland are in the Snowy Mountains region in New South Wales and the Victorian Alps which are part of the Great Dividing Range separating the central lowlands from the eastern highlands.

Highest Mountains

Australia's ten highest mountains Note: In producing a list of highest mountains, there is always subjective debate over what should and should not be included. Some peaks may have local names that are unknown to state authorities or map producers. The Australian Deserts - Facts, Information, Outback Travel Advice. Australian Deserts make up a big part of what is known as "the Australian Outback".

The Australian Deserts - Facts, Information, Outback Travel Advice

You might have heard the term "the Outback Desert of Australia". That name is misleading in two ways. First, it sounds as if there was one big desert in Australia, the Outback Desert. Deserts.