Tasmania is an Australianisland and state of the same name. It is located 240 kilometres (150 mi) south of the eastern side of the continent, being separated from it by Bass Strait. The state of Tasmania includes the island of Tasmania, and other surrounding islands. Tasmania has a population of 484,700 and an area of 68,332 square kilometres (26,383 sq mi).
Tasmania promotes itself as the Natural State and the "Island of Inspiration" owing to its large, and relatively unspoiled natural environment. Formally, almost 37% of Tasmania is in reserves, National Parks and World Heritage Sites. The island is 364 kilometres long from the northernmost point to the southernmost point, and 306 kilometres from west to east.
Hydro Tasmania was formed on the dis-aggregation of the Hydro Electric Commission on July 1, 1998. This resulted in the division of the formerly government owned department into three companies – Hydro Tasmania which generates the power, Transend Networks which transmits it across the state, and Aurora Energy, the retail arm, which sells and distributes it to customers. This was in anticipation of Tasmania joining the National Electricity Market, which occurred in May 2005.