Map of Earth Click to enlarge image
Map of Earth Image: Illustration
© Public Domain

During the past 10,000 years, Australia's global position and climate has changed little, but there have been enormous changes in its plants, animals and environments. Such changes have happened since the first people arrived in Australia, but the most rapid and dramatic changes have occurred during the last 200 years or so, since Europeans arrived.

Australia's Holocene facts


  • Australia global position was virtually the same as it is today.


  • Australia's climate became slightly wetter until about 5,000 years ago; since then it has continued to dry.


  • Australia's Indigenous peoples used 'fire stick' farming to seasonally burn off selected areas of bushland.
  • European settlers radically changed the pattern and types of vegetation growing across Australia by clearing the land to make way for farmland, towns and cities and by introducing a variety of plants from overseas.


  • Many varieties of Australian indigenous animals have died out or become endangered since humans brought in other kinds of animals from overseas.

What is happening in the rest of the world

  • The continued growth in human population has had an impact in every region of the world.