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history:h_australia_c21a

Australian history 2000-2025

Introduction

  • the new decade started optimistically after the fears of the Y2K bug in legacy computer systems is resolved without catastrophe
  • the 911 event of Sept 2001 cast a wide net of terrorism fears across the world and had substantial fear and anxiety across all western nations in particular, including Australia resulting in massive anti-terrorism process changes and security measures to access to public spaces and to air travel
  • much of the 1st decade politics were dominated by debates on illegal immigrants - the boat people and detention centres, as well as the deeply partisan attitudes to climate change
  • Australian dollar though takes a hit and soon falls from US66c to a brief low of US48c in March 2001 before commencing a long bull run to US97.5c in July 2008 when it is hit by the GFC resulting in a rapid fall to US62.5c by Oct 2008. It then recovered rapidly to hit a peak of $US1.10 in July 2011 when another financial crisis saw it start a long term bear run dropping to US57c in March 2020 at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.1)

Timeline

  • 2000:
    • Melbourne's Colonial Stadium opens to host its 1st AFL game
    • Legionnaires' disease outbreak from newly opened Melbourne Aquarium in May.
    • GST introduced
    • Aust. takes on role of US deputy sheriff to the Asian region by sending troops to East Timor and opposing the Indonesians.
    • deliberately lit backpacker hostel fire in Childers, Qld kills 23 backpackers
    • Tas. govt wins right to ban introduction of genetically engineered crops
    • S11 anti-globalisation protesters clash with police at World Economic Forum in Melbourne Sept 11-13;
    • Sydney hosts 2000 Olympic Games in Sept/Oct. with Aust. winning a record 16 gold, 25 silver & 17 bronze.
    • Burnley Tunnel opens, completing the Melbourne CityLink Tollway.
    • 3/4 leg pants become fashionable;
    • the total rainfall averaged throughout Australia during 2000 was the second highest since 1900, largely due to a La Nina in the early parts of the year. Heavy rainfall resulted in the partial filling of Lake Eyre in Autumn and numerous flooding events, such as the New South Wales floods during November. However, most Australians are unlikely to remember 2000 as being particularly wet. The wettest areas were generally those with the lowest populations and most capital cities recorded average or below average rainfall.
  • 2001:
    • PM Howard is re-elected after his waning electoral support is boosted by the Tampa boat refugee saga followed by the Sept 11 terrorism attacks whilst he was in Washington.
    • $AU (AUD) falls below US 50c in March 2001 to a low of 48.5c
    • gothic-look and facial/tongue piercing becomes fashionable;
    • Sydney's 1st legal heroin injecting room opens in Kings Cross for an 18mth trial.
    • British tourist Peter Falconio went missing, feared kidnapped & murdered in NT outback while his girlfriend escapes
    • Qld introduces mandatory DNA testing for prisoners in custody awaiting trial for indictable offences
    • Victorian weather:
      • exceptionally hot start to the year (for 2000-2001 summer, Melbourne's minimum temperatures averaged 16.9 degrees, an all-time record (normal 14.7), while maximum temperatures averaged 28.1 (normal 25.3). Melbourne experienced 18 summer nights when the temperature remained 20 degrees or higher, a record. The previous record was 17 nights in 1980-81.)
      • a very mild winter (which seriously disrupted the ski season)
      • the relatively warm and dry 2001 concluded with a cool December - never before has there been a summer when the first 30 degrees has been so late (Dec 29th). Melbourne's mean maximum temperature for December (21.5 degrees) was the equal-fifth lowest on record.
  • 2002:
    • urban real estate boom across Australia finally shows signs of slowing by end of year although lifestyle investment choices such as coastal real estate continue to boom.
    • Australia & Britain are alone in support of US stance on pre-emptive strike against Iraq, although Australians increasingly oppose war without UN approval.
    • Australia increasingly seen as a safe haven for foreign investments as it has one of the few growing economies despite worldwide economic crises
    • Day Spa and massage become very popular
    • Victoria experienced an exceptionally dry year. Most districts registered annual totals among the driest 10% in history; Melbourne has its 3rd driest year on record with only 397 mm of rain (normal 639 mm). Only 1967, when 332 mm of rain fell, and 1997, when 360 mm of rain fell, have been drier.
  • 2003:
    • casual fashion dominated by bare bellies, low cut jeans, exposed G-strings, body piercings, Brazilian pubic hair wax, and sun-tan is back after being unfashionable since the late 1980's. Trend towards 70's look including the unkempt long hair for adolescents males as well as hippy-style dresses and even elements of 1920-40's dresses and jewellery styles and perfumes;
    • Kylie Minogue's popularity as a pop. singer peaks;
    • Delta Goodrem dominates local pop. music scene but then develops Hodgkin's lymphoma;
    • Jan 18 - Canberra bushfires destroy over 500 suburban houses; NE Vic alpine bushfires threaten rural towns & alpine resorts;
    • Hutchinson telecom introduce 3G mobile phone services including live video talk;
    • March: Australians divided on involvement of invasion of Iraq, but eventually mainly support it.
    • Adelaide-Darwin train line opens;
    • Dec: hottest Melbourne December for 130yrs as drought conditions continue and water restrictions hit suburban lawns hard.
    • the conclusion of the El Nino event allowed rainfall to return to normal over much of the State, although Gippsland and the East Central district of Victoria registered 2003 totals that were among the driest 10% of annual totals on record. For the 3-year period 2001-2003, the East Central District, with 1940.5 mm, experienced its driest such period on record (normal: 2637.8 mm; previous record: 2171.4 mm during the 3-year period 1943-1945).
  • 2004:
    • Apple's iPod MP3 player begins its domination of the adolescent MP3 player market despite its dubious quality issues and inability to get a refund. Time to buy shares in Cochlear - the maker of the bionic ear - as these kids will soon need them! Steve Waugh retires from test cricket;
    • real estate prices set to plateau after doubling in past 5-6yrs, now forecast to rise by only 5% pa for next 3yrs.
    • Federal Labour opposition leader Mark Latham dominates opinion polls with his new enthusiasm for change and perhaps general boredom with PM Howard's conservatism.
    • PM Howard is re-elected on fears that Latham's policies would not be fiscally responsible.
    • Nov: locust plague in NSW
    • Dec: Richter 8.1 underwater earthquake south-east of Tasmania precedes the 8.9 Indonesia quake.
    • Aust. share market hits record highs as News Corp becomes a US-based company.
  • 2005:
    • Aust. govt promises an unprecedented $1.5b in aid to Indonesia after the Indian Ocean tsunami
    • Aust. singer Kylie Minogue diagnosed with breast cancer.
    • Australia loses the Ashes cricket series to England for the first time since the 1980s, but rebounds to convincingly beat the West Indies at home.
    • Aust. share market continues its bull run despite rising oil prices and risk of interest rate rises from the resulting increase in CPI.
    • ugly racial tension flares on Sydney's beaches between the Anglo-saxon and the Lebanese communities, threatening to impact on Australia's reputation of a tolerant multicultural society.
    • Australia has its warmest year on record as the last 2 years of hot summers with mild winters and increased soil moisture have resulted in a mini-plague of domestic house flies in Victoria in December 2005, while a plague of locusts head south from NSW.
    • hmmm….had you bought the Cochlear (bionic ear) shares in April 2004 for $A19, you would now be sitting on shares worth $A45 - a nice return of 173% in 21 months and there should be yet more to come as iPod followers have not yet started their epidemic of permanent deafness.
  • 2006:
    • Jan: bushfires devastate Victoria's Grampians region
    • Melbourne hosts the Commonwealth Games
    • Cyclone Larry, the strongest cyclone on record to cross Australian mainland devastates the Innisfail region, south of Cairns causing a shortage of bananas for the remainder of the year.
    • Australia reach the World Cup Soccer finals.
    • Steve Irwin is killed by a stingray.
    • Victoria has another dry winter and spring - its 10th year of drought followed by its 2nd driest October on record and driest spring since 1939.
    • Sydney and Brisbane have their coldest November nights in 100 yrs.
    • Australia pulls off a highly improbable cricket test victory against England at Adelaide after England had declared its 1st innings for over 500 runs.
    • Dec: massive bushfires hit Victoria's eastern alps; Incredibly it snows for Christmas Day in the alps while the bushfires continue to burn.
    • Australia regains the cricket Ashes by defeating England as Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath announce their retirement.
    • Melbourne finishes the year with its 8th driest on record
  • 2007:
    • Australia wins the ICC World Cup in cricket
    • Melbourne has its driest 365 days on record
    • Stock market ends its bull run in August 2007 after global credit crunch fears following US sub-prime mortgage crisis
    • Geelong FC win their 1st AFL premiership since 1963.
    • Aust. PM John Howard loses election to Labour's Kevin Rudd.
  • 2008:
    • stock market begins to rally in April/May as it appears the worst is over for the stock market despite ongoing concerns of credit squeeze, inflation, rising oil prices and potential for recession in the US.
    • famous Australian photographer Bill Henson has his exhibition closed and photographs seized on concerns it is child porn raising much debate on whether such imagery can be deemed acceptable as an artistic.
    • stock market again falls in July after major banks announce $1b plus write downs due to exposure to US sub-prime markets, so the bear market continues.
    • July - $A peaks against $US at $0.9851 then falls to $0.88 in mid-Aug with falling commodity prices including oil, recessionary fears and probable peaking of Australian interest rate cycle in an economic setting of probable rising domestic inflation, unemployment, impact of forthcoming climate change expenses and mortgage stress.
    • Melbourne's dams still only at ~30% capacity as the long drought continues.
    • Oct: $A falls to US 65c and 50c euro;
  • 2009:
    • Jan:
      • floods in northern Australia while record breaking heat waves and dry spell hit south-east Australia.
      • Australia loses cricket test series to Sth Africa.
      • Govt announces massive stimulus package to minimise the downturn in global economy affecting Australia.
    • Feb:
      • Black Saturday bushfires in record ambient temperatures of 47.6degC in Victoria results in rapidly moving firestorms which kill over 200 people.
      • barely 2mm rain falls in the 1st 2 months of 2009 in Melbourne - a record dry start to a year.
    • Mar: Aust. shares hit 5 yr low despite Reserve Bank having reduced interest rates by 4% points in 8 months to 3.5%.
  • 2010:
    • after replacing Prime Minister Rudd as Labour leader, Julia Gillard just manages to form a minority government and become Australia's first “elected” female Prime Minister.
    • real estate market continues to boom but slowing by year's end after a series of interest rate hikes.
    • Melbourne's dams hit 50% full after good Winter rains, and the wettest Melbourne Spring since 1992.
    • La Nina brings wettest Spring on record to Australia and hopefully breaks the long 12 year drought in SE Australia
    • $A hits parity with the plunging $US while reaching 74c euro
  • 2011:
    • Geelong beats Collingwood to win the AFL premiership
  • 2012:
    • Australia wins cricket series against India
    • vocal performance competition shows dominate the winter TV networks such as The Voice with Delta Goodrem and Seal
    • real estate markets in Australia continue to fall slightly as new loans fall substantially despite falling interest rates with concerns of employment stability, high property prices and global economic uncertainty.
    • Sydney Swans wins the AFL football premiership
    • Australia loses cricket series against South Africa
    • Australia wins cricket series against Sri Lanka as captain Michael Clark creates an Australian record for most test runs scored in a calendar year
    • Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey retire from Test cricket
    • Australian share market ends year marginally higher
  • 2013:
    • early Jan 2013 records the hottest average temperatures for the day across all of Australia on record in Australia, and 7 of the hottest 20 Australia-wide days on record as bushfires ravage NSW, Tas, and south-west Victoria, in particular. Oodnadatta recorded average daily maximums of 46.6degC for the week of Jan 2nd to 8th. Moomba in the far northeast of South Australia records temperature of 49.6degC, Australia's 8th highest temperature on record, the hottest maximum in Australia since Nyang in the Pilbara reached 49.8degC in 1998, and the hottest in South Australia since Oodnadatta reached 50.3 deg in Jan 1960 (Oodnadatta reached the current Australian record of 50.7degC earlier in Jan 1960). Bourke in NSW reached 48.3degC, it's hottest day since 1939, and the hottest NSW day since Ivanhoe reached 48.5degC in Feb 2004. Birdsville in Queensland reached 48.6degC, Queensland's hottest day in 22 years since Dec 1990 when Birsdville reached 48.8. Sydney has its hottest day on record on 18th Jan with 45.8degC while it hit 46.5degC in Penrith.
    • major Victorian bushfires included those on the west aspects of the Grampians, and the “Aberfeldy fire” which started near Glenmaggie and burned for a month in the Victorian Alps to near Licola and Harrietville.
    • the 2012-13 summer ends with it being Australia's hottest on record with over 2/3rds of regions recording a summer amongst the top 10 hottest in 100 years. Victoria has its equal highest number of hot consecutive February days on record of 10 days, equalling the record set in 1997, and Melbourne has a record unprecedented run of 8 days over 32degC in March!
    • the 11 months from June to the end of April were also Australia's hottest for maximum temperatures
    • the first four months of 2013 have seen average national daily maximum temperatures reach about 1.33 degrees above the average for 1961-1990, shy only of the blisteringly hot start to 2005
    • Sydney records four-day run of 26 degrees or warmer weather from April 26-29 was the second hottest spell so late in the season in 150 years of records, lagging only 1968.
    • Australian stock market hits a peak mid-May with All Ords at 5230 having risen strongly by 29% from a low of 4041 near end of June 2012, then suddenly turns bearish along with the $AU which dropped below its $US96c support base
    • Melbourne and Sydney have their hottest July on record, and Australia has it's hottest 11 month period on record to end of July.
    • Tony Abbott becomes new Prime Minister as Liberals easily win election
    • Melbourne has hottest September on record and real estate market picks up across the country
    • bushfires in the Blue Mountains October 2013
  • 2016:
    • PM Turnbull calls a double dissolution election which almost backfired as he wins with a very slim majority and an even more difficult senate
    • Sept - eastern Australia has wettest Sept on record as 5x normal rainfall over 2m sq.km fell causing widespread flooding (esp. Forbes NSW, Clare Valley SA, western Victoria) as well as Sth Australia losing power grid due to the strong winds
    • Western Bulldogs beats Sydney Swans wins the AFL premiership Grand Final for 1st time in 62 years after coming up as underdogs from 7th position on the ladder
  • 2017:
    • Australia has hottest July on record
    • Richmond wins AFL flag
  • 2018:
    • Australia has hottest late March day on record as temp hits 45degC for the 1st time in late march
    • Sydney, Adelaide and other areas including the State of Victoria, have their hottest April days on record hitting 35degC in Sydney
    • PM Turnbull dumped by his own Liberal Party and replaced with Scott Morrison
  • 2019:
    • Australia has the hottest month on record - the mean temperature for January averaged across the country exceeded 30 degrees Celsius — the first time this had occurred in any month! Although Perth had its coolest January in over a decade.
    • for the 1st time since 1957, Adelaide CBD receives zero rainfall in a month - Jan 2019
    • Jan bushfires in Tasmania
    • Feb - bushfires burn extensive areas of Victoria's west and central alpine areas
    • Sept-Dec - almost apocalyptic extensive bushfires ravage east coast of NSW, east Gippsland and Kosciusko NP
    • hottest and driest year on record across Australia in terms of annual mean temp anomaly, annual maximum temp anomaly and broke the record for its hottest day on record two days in a row with with the nation's average maximum temperature smashing the previous record (40.3C) to reach 40.7C and then 41.9C a day later - this occurred without an El Nino but was driven by an incredibly strong positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) preceded by an unusual sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) event combined with a strong positive phase of the Southern Annular Mode (SAM), also added to the hot dry conditions in late 2018 2)
  • 2020:
    • Covid pandemic
    • Adelaide has coldest morning for 76 yrs as ice forms on river Torrens on June 10th
    • Australia reaches recession level for the 1st time since the early 1990s due to Covid restrictions which have resulted in:
      • 7% drop in GDP for the June quarter (previous record drop was 2% in 1974), saved only by a record injection of social welfare payments of over $100b taking govt payments as proportion of household income to a record 4.5% compared to a usual of under 0.5% and a recent high of 1% in 2012
      • 8% drop in real net national disposable income per capita for the June quarter (previous record drop was just over 4% in 1974)
      • 12.7% drop in consumer spending primarily due to a 17.6% drop in spending on services, the hardest hit being transport, accommodation, cafes and restaurants
      • household savings proportion rose to 20% in June quarter compared to a pre-Covid level of 4%
      • non-mining business investment was down 9.3% in the June quarter
history/h_australia_c21a.txt · Last modified: 2020/09/03 16:45 by gary1