Peter Charles, Monash University
The study uses mapping and diagramming tactics to explore resource extraction systems in relation to towns with processing smelters separated from resource extraction sites. These are used to identify sites for stimulators that focus on new carbon economies and environmental tourism.
Tactics include using Food-web and Sankey diagrams to explore aluminium processing systems, and Patrick Geddes Sieve method to explore the intersection of map layers combining concepts from Landscape Urbanism and Industrial Ecology. Environmental maps are created using Arduino microprocessors, environmental sensors, GPS, and GIS.
The tactics were applied to Portland, a pivotal port town 550km west of Melbourne which was the first European settlement in Victoria and holds world heritage Gunditjmara agricultural sites.
Portland has a relatively new aluminium smelter with a subsidised energy contract to 2036 from the Loy Yang Power station, located 500km away in the La Trobe Valley. The Bauxite that is smelted is also mined far away. The potline of the smelter can be used as a battery to stabilise energy flow. The smelter uses 10% of Victorian energy, playing a large role in decisions related to carbon and the economy.
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