Western Australia is by far the largest state of the commonwealth of Australia, occupying 2.5 million square kilometers, an area approximately the same as Western Europe. In contrast to its vast size, its population is a mere 1.2 million people. Moreover, a demographic sketch of Western Australia shows that almost 90 percent of this population is concentrated within 400 kilometers of Perth, the capital city (see Figure 1). The remaining 180,000 people thus occupy almost 90 percent of the state's area. In this sparsely populated 90 percent of the land mass, the average population density is less than one person per 10 square kilometers. Some areas, of course, have much lower population densities. The shire of Sandstone, for example, has an average of one person to every 400 square kilometers.