King Island Information
King Island is one of Australia’s untapped island retreats. Wildly rugged, windswept and attractive it boasts over 145 km of coastline, and a wide and unusual variety of seabirds and wildlife.
This is not a tiny island. It is some 64 km long and 26 km wide and has a total area of 110,000 Ha. The Island is situated at the western entrance to Bass Strait midway between Victoria and mainland Tasmania, being 120 kilometres or forty-five minutes flying in either direction. There are daily air services to Tullamarine and Moorabbin airports in Melbourne, as well as Burnie/Wynyard airport in Tasmania.
King Island has a population of approximately 1,600 permanent residents, of whom 700 reside in the township of Currie situated on the west coast. There are two other villages, Naracoopa on the east coast and Grassy to the south east.
The Island enjoys a reputation for excellence in the production of food products. Beef and dairy farms cover the island from the northern tip to the southern end. There is a small fishing industry, mostly southern rock lobster and a small number of abalone divers working from the island. King Island Dairy and JBS Australia are the two major employers on the Island. Kelp Industries is a major part of the Island economy and tourism has become the growth industry over recent times. There are two mining operations in start-up mode, a sand mine at Naracoopa and a scheelite mine at Grassy.
King Island is 64km long and 26 km wide.
Tullamarine Airport (Vic) to King Island Airport: 151 nautical miles (279 km)
Moorabbin Airport (Vic) to King Island Airport: 131 nautical miles (242 km)
Devonport Airport (Tas) to King Island Airport: 129 nautical miles (238 km)
Being a remote island community, King Island does not rely on either mainland Tasmania or mainland Australia for its electricity supply. Hydro Tasmania is responsible for the generation, distribution and retail of electricity on the Bass Strait Islands. Hydro Tasmania is a Government Business Enterprise, owned by the State of Tasmania and is Australia’s leading renewable energy business with a vision is to be Tasmania’s world-renowned renewable energy business.
King Island is proving to be an ideal place for Hydro Tasmania and research partners to innovate methods for renewable energy and remote area power supply (RAPS). Wind and solar renewable power generation is currently used on the island with diesel generators providing firm capacity and ancillary services. The target with this system is to use all the available solar and wind power to reduce diesel usage.