Why was the U.S. able to populate the interior of the country and AUSTRALIA was not?
Australia is the 6th biggest country on the planet. Its size is generally equivalent to that of the US without a gold country. However, assuming we take a gander at the guide of the US and Australia around evening time, we see altogether different examples on the u.s side, urban communities and unassuming communities arrive at a far inland and on the Australian side the area in the inside is uninhabited and enormous and little urban areas are found exclusively on the coast, albeit as far as an outright populace, contrasting the two countries isn’t suitable. U.S
This contrast helps to see the population patterns of both countries, so the questions are: why do almost 80 percent of Australians live here when they have such a large territory in the interior? Why do people in the united states live in the interior away from the coasts and why has the Australian government failed to decentralize its population?
both the indigenous Australians and the first European settlers who came to Australia decided where to live based on the availability of the resources they needed to survive such as water, food, and shelter, and it was normal for the first settlers to arrive in a country to do so along the coasts and later begin to explore the interior of the country founding new settlements, as it happened, for example, in the united states. This is shown in these maps that illustrate the settlement areas in four different years. U.S
In 1790, 1840, 1880, and 1890, however, this didn’t happen in Australia. In the outback, there are no small towns, let alone large cities. The main reason is that most of the Australian outback is desert or semi-desert, with weathered eroded, terrain and extreme climatic conditions to support large cities and towns. U.S
These desert areas have arisen because Australia receives the second least rainfall in the world after Antarctica on the side of the central region of the country, is lake ire, where several rivers flow, but most of the time they have no water. So it is not difficult to conclude why this part of Australia is practically uninhabited. In contrast in the eastern region, along the entire coast, there is a great dividing range and, unlike the interior, most of the coastal areas are green and blessed with fresh water, and that is why Australia’s population patterns are so strong. U.S
Water means life, it facilitates survival and often translates into abundant food, because rivers make the nearby soil more fertile for growing crops. It also makes fishing and the raising of livestock and other animals possible. U.S
Hence the first indigenous Australians sought more habitable places on the east and south coasts of what is known as the Murray river, primitive tribes used all kinds of elements of the natural environment to sustain their way of life such as stones, bones plants, and shells. However, a freshwater supply such as a river was perhaps the most important resource but early settlers settled in this area of the country, not only because of access to fresh water and extensive farmland but also because of the gold rush. U.S
This attracted thousands of immigrants mainly to new south wales and victoria in these two states, where Australia’s largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne are located, the largest gold discoveries took place, so gold attracted hundreds of thousands of immigrants and transformed the future of Australia.
But the original reason that explains why almost 80 percent of Australians live on the east coast of the country is that they have easy access to water and in the interior of the country they do not, and this could also explain why settlements were created in the united states, not only on the east coast but also in the interior of the country. U.S
The reason is the Mississippi river. This 3 700 kilometer-long river crosses practically the entire united states from north to south flowing through 10 states from Minnesota to New Orleans. Water is not only vital for human consumption or agriculture but also for the industry since most final products require large quantities of water to be finished. U.S
Economic activities related to fishing are developed around this river, and the forests in the Mississippi valley encourage timber production. The fertile lands due to their proximity to the river facilitate the cultivation of rice, sugarcane, cotton, and cereals. In addition, the water is also used to generate electricity by some industries, not only that,
but shipping is the cheapest way to transport large quantities of goods, which is why most of the country’s largest cities are located on the coasts or the banks of a large river, it is said that the navigable rivers of the world were the highways of civilization since ancient times today, these rivers are still the cheapest way to transport goods. Mississippi carries 10 percent of the nation’s goods, some 460 million tons of goods such as coal, steel, aluminum, and agricultural products. U.S
The Mississippi explains the same settlement pattern that Canada experienced with the saint Lawrence river new york with the Hudson river or Egypt with the Nile river. In short, a river like the Mississippi and its entire river network explain in part why in the united states there are numerous cities so far from the coasts, and in Australia, there are not. U.S
The few people who live in these desert ranges and with difficult access to water are mostly indigenous people who, despite having to overcome many challenges, to survive, continue to choose this territory, because their connection to the land is very deep. The rest of the Australians are concentrated in a few cities and their metropolitan areas, such as Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane on the east coast and Perth on the west coast. But the government wants to change this trend. U.S
There is an ongoing debate in Australia about whether or not to attract more immigrants to the country, 30 percent of the population is made up of immigrants. In the last 20 years alone, more than 3.6 million have arrived a high number, considering its total population of 25 million. U.S
So the dilemma among Australians is that this influx of immigrants has benefited the country demographically because it has increased the fertility rate I.e thanks to immigration, enough, babies are being born in Australia to maintain adequate population growth, but on the other hand, some say that the high number of immigrants Australia receives annually is unsustainable because the cities and resources such as water will not support the 36 million people Australia expects to have by 2050. U.S
For this reason, the government has tried to decentralize the population, that is, to create incentives and plans for more people to live in places other than the popular ones, such as Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane, and thus relieve the pressure on these cities. U.S
The government has had programs in place for several decades to attract immigrants to the regions away from the coasts. There are specific visas for this, but even though there may be employment opportunities and good quality of life in these regions, in the end, immigrants behave like young Australians and are attracted precisely by Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, and Brisbane. U.S
It makes sense from an immigrant’s point of view. Most are skilled and educated. So it is reasonable that they want to live in the cities where they find not only the best jobs but where they have the easiest, access to universities, shopping, centers, medical centers, sports facilities, entertainment, and so on.
In addition, the higher population density of large cities makes it more likely to live near other people of the same language. Culture- and these reasons explain in part why the government has failed in its attempt to permanently populate with immigrants, areas of the country other than the three or four big cities on the coasts. U.S
In a previous video on the channel, we mentioned how the Canadian government has also sought to populate the northern part of the country, but as in Australia, both natives and immigrants still prefer to live in the major southern cities such as Toronto and Montreal, from which one could deduce that controlling people’s preferences can be very complicated for a government and therefore it is likely that this map of Australia at night will still look the same in 2050 only with these larger cities. U.S