Climate lures people south
CLIMATE and environment are the top factors attracting interstate migrants to Tasmania and the perception the state does not offer stable work is not deterring people from moving here, a new study has found.
The paper “Moving to Tassie – a brief examination of internal migration to Tasmania” by sociologists Nick Osbaldiston from James Cook University and Felicity Picken from Western Sydney University plus demographer Lisa Denny from the University of Tasmania aims to better understand the factors in the decision to move to Tasmania.
Surveys conducted for the paper found a range of different drivers for pushing people from other Australian states or territories including climate, environment, safety and work-life balance.
Dr Osbaldiston said the most surprising thing to come out of the research was how much of a factor climate change played in people’s decision to leave the mainland.
“People are looking for a cooler climate, a climate where they actually have four seasons,” he said.
The research revealed incoming migrants were not all predominantly of retirement age. It also found a number of local government areas were experiencing a reversal of population decline trends including the Central Coast, Devonport and Launceston through a mixture of internal and overseas migration.
Clarence, the Derwent Valley, Glenorchy, Hobart, Huon Valley, Kingborough, Latrobe, Northern Midlands, Sorell and the West Tamar were experiencing migrationled growth.
Only Brighton experienced what was described as “sustainable growth” – a balance between natural increase and migration.
Dr Osbaldiston said the perception of participants was that Tasmania did not offer stable employment, but this was not a deterrent because people were moving to the state for different reasons.
Hobart Lord Mayor Anna Reynolds said the study confirmed that the south of the state was where most migrants were flocking to.
“Responsible State and Federal Government policy and resources must respond to this trend,” she said.
“There is no point trying to ignore this and continuing to invest heavily in areas of the state where the population is declining.”