Port Hedland: Mining Iron ore

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Port Hedland Political Factors: The founding and orientation of this town is towards mining iron ore. The coastline near the area of Port Hedland had been explored in the 1700's by Captain Peter Hedland, of which the town was named after. He was one of the first Europeans to explore the region to develop an export port due to its natural harbor. "Peter Hedland arrived in the area in April 1863 onboard his boat, Mystery that he had built himself at Point Walter on the banks of the Swan River. He named the harbour Mangrove Harbour and reported that it would make a good landing site with a well protected harbour and that there was also fresh water available." (Hardie 1981) Near the harbor of Port Hedland was built a beach front immigration detention facility that housed immigrants first made in 1991. People labled as "Boat People" thought of Port Hedland as a good place to seek asylum and were soon deported after the immigration facility was put into effect. Presently due to the demand for housing and an increase in iron ore production, it closed down the facility in 2004 and used it to house iron ore workers. Economic Factors: Port Hedland is rich in iron ore mines, livestock, and has a natural harbor that is used to export iron ore. The main export of Port Hedland is iron. Before the dredging of the channel in 1986, the highest amount of iron ore that could be exported per vessel was 2,000 tonnes. Now it can accommodate ships with a capacity of up to 250,000

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