Victoria's Primary and Energy Industries
Our primary and energy industries contribute fundamentally to our wealth and wellbeing by producing food, fibre, energy, minerals and building materials that are essential to our quality of life.
Victoria is rich in natural resources and has a strong history of primary and energy industry development. Agriculture, earth resources, energy, fisheries, forestry and game hunting are all primary industries. We work with these industries so they can change to meet future challenges and generate wealth and employment, while taking their environmental and social responsibilities seriously.
Victoria is Australia's largest food and fibre exporting state. Our strong agricultural sector produces goods valued at around $9 billion a year, or 26 per cent of the national total. Victoria's temperate climate, high quality soils and clean water support our world-class agriculture industries. The state's largest export earner, the dairy industry, provides no less than 13 per cent of dairy products traded globally.
Victoria's coastal waters, bays and estuaries have 2,500 kilometres of coastline, and inland Victoria features thousands of kilometres of rivers, streams and lakes. Our unpolluted waters provide some of the world's finest seafood from mussels and abalone, to rock lobster and snapper. And there's plenty for recreational fishers to catch, supporting local economies across provincial Victoria.
Victoria's earth resources include coal and gas, which provide us with affordable electricity and heat. Victorian mineral sands provide pigments for paints and precious metals such as titanium, used in computing, electronics and aviation. About 100 tonnes of stone and sand products go into every Victorian house and garden as bricks, glass, tiles and pavers, and into our roads. A gold boom is driving investment and jobs in provincial Victoria, and new resources such as geothermal heat may provide us with clean energy for the future.
Victoria's energy systems comprise exploration, generation, transmission, distribution and retailers. While energy systems are privately owned, we aim to ensure all consumers receive safe, secure and affordable energy services. We also facilitate investment in energy supply, and plan against electricity and gas supply emergencies.
Of Victoria's 8.8 million hectares of public land, more than one third is State forest. This land is sustainably managed to balance a variety of uses, including the provision of wood and other forest products. Victorias forestry industry is responsible for more than one third of Australia's direct forest exports.
Victoria offers a diverse range of hunting opportunities. The Wildlife (Game) Regulations 2012, which came into effect in September 2012, aim to ensure sustainability and provide quality hunting experiences for what is a growing recreational activity. There are around 43,000 licensed game hunters in Victoria - an increase of almost 46 per cent in the last decade. Licensed game hunters in Victoria spent the equivalent of about 280,000 days hunting in 2011-12, and game hunting in Victoria generates around $100 million of economic activity annually.