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4602.0 - Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices, Mar 2004  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/11/2004   
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A RELEASE

November 24, 2004
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
163/2004

Australians more water conscious but less concerned about the environment

More Australian households are practising water conservation both inside and outside the house, but are less concerned about environmental problems according to 2004 figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today.

More than 90% of Australian households reported conserving water in the garden. Mulching was the most popular water conserving practice, used by 59% of Australian households. This was up from 51% in 2001.

Significantly more households also reported using recycled water on the garden in 2004 (18%, up from 11% in 2001), planting native shrubs or trees (17%, up from 10%) and not watering the garden at all (10%, up from 6%).

One-quarter (25%) of households reported watering either early in the morning or late in the evening to conserve water in the garden. Also, the use of hand watering instead of a sprinkler system increased from 66% to 71% over the three year period.

Water conserving devices were used by 82% of households in 2004. The most common were dual-flush toilets (74%). Reduced flow shower heads were installed in 44% of houses.

The use of water conservation practices inside the home had increased over the three years to 2004, although they were less established. Under half (46%) of Australian households adopted practices in the home.

Having full loads when washing (18%) and taking shorter showers (18%) were the most popular actions. Significantly more households were recycling or reusing water inside the home in 2004 (16%, up from 11% in 2001).

Australians concerned about environmental problems has reached its lowest level recorded since the survey began. Nearly 8.6 million Australians (57%) aged 18 years or over were concerned about environmental problems in 2004, compared with 75% in 1992.

Further details are available in Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices (cat. no. 4602.0).

STATE AND TERRITORY FACT SHEETS

New South Wales
Victoria
Queensland
South Australia
Western Australia
Tasmania
Northern Territory
Australian Capital Territory

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - New South Wales

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • Nearly 2.8 million people in New South Wales aged 18 years and over (55%) stated they were concerned about environmental problems. This was a decrease from 59% in 2001 (page 16).
  • About 6% of people in NSW registered an environmental concern in 2004, the second lowest level in Australia (after the Northern Territory) (p. 18).
  • NSW residents were most likely to register their concern through a signed petition or writing a letter (both 34%). Telephone was the method used by 18% of NSW residents who registered a concern, significantly lower than the Australian average of 25% (p. 20).
  • Approximately 19% of NSW residents donated time or money to environmental protection (p. 22).
  • Under half (46%) of NSW residents who were not involved in either donating time or money, or registering an environmental concern, did not do so due to lack of time (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • About 94% of households in NSW were connected to mains/town water in March 2004. Sydney (98%) was higher than elsewhere in the state (89%). The national average for areas outside the capital cities was 85% of households.
  • Mains/town water was the main source of drinking water for 82% of NSW households (p. 45); the main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 94% of households (p. 43); and the main source of water for gardening for 87% of households with a garden (p. 41).
  • Nearly 90% of Sydney households used mains/town water as their main source of drinking water, compared to 71% elsewhere in the state. The Australian average for areas outside the capital cities was 67% (p. 44).
  • Nearly 13% of households in NSW sourced water from rainwater tanks; with 5% in Sydney compared to 26% outside the city. The national average was 17% (p. 38).
  • One-quarter (25%) of NSW households used purchased bottled water in 2004, an increase from 17% in 2001 (p. 39). Approximately 9% of households relied on it as their main source of drinking water. NSW and the Australian Capital Territory had the highest rates of usage of bottled water. Nationally, 21% of households used bottled water (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • Just over one-quarter (26%) of NSW households used a water filter in their drinking water, an increase from 20% in 2001 (p. 46).
  • Just under one-quarter (23%) of NSW residents were not satisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking. This was a slight decrease on 2001 (26% not satisfied) (p. 47).
  • Taste (other than being salty) was the main concern (47%) nominated by people dissatisfied with the mains water quality; followed by chlorine (25%); colour (18%); and microbial/algae contamination (18%). People in NSW nominated microbial/algae contamination more often than any other state or territory (10% nationally), although this was a decrease from 2001 (25%) (p. 48).
  • Over two-thirds (68%) of NSW households had dual flush toilets in 2004, an increase from 56% in 2001. This was below the national average of 74%. Under half (43%) of households had reduced flow shower heads, an increase from 34% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • Under half (44%) of households in NSW engaged in some form of water conservation practices in and around the dwelling. This was an increase from 39% in 2001. The most popular water conservation measure taken in the home was taking shorter showers (16%, up from 12% in 2001); followed by full loads when washing clothes/dishes and turning off/repairing dripping taps (both 15%). Recycling and/or reusing water was practiced by 14% of NSW households, an increase from 9% in 2001 (p. 55).
  • Most (90%) of households with gardens in NSW took measures to conserve water in the garden. Mulching to conserve water was reported by 54% of New South Wales households, an increase from 42% in 2001. The use of recycled water in the garden increased from 9% in 2001 to 19% in 2004 (p. 57).
  • The use of moveable sprinklers and fixed sprinkler systems reduced dramatically since 2001 (from 27% down to 9% for moveable sprinklers; and 19% down to 8% for fixed sprinkler systems). The most preferred method, hand watering, increased from 71% of households in 2001 to 76% in 2004 (p. 57).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • In 2004, almost nine in ten households in NSW (89%) reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Products with refillable containers (67% of households) and recycled paper products (66% of households) were the EFPs most commonly purchased by NSW households (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most important reason why households in NSW do not buy EFPs (33%), although this was reported less frequently by NSW households than most other states and territories (p. 67).
  • About 43% of households in NSW grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, 86% of which used some form of fertilisers. Nearly 32% of households used pesticide or weedkiller when growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • In March 2004, nearly 2.5 million (50%) people in NSW aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey (p. 77).
  • Lack of time was the most common reason why people in NSW did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park (36%); followed by age/health/inability (18%) (p. 80).

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Victoria

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • About 2.2 million people In Victoria aged 18 years and over (59%) stated they were concerned about environmental problems, compared with 61% in 2001 (page 16).
  • Nearly 8% of Victorians registered an environmental concern in 2004 (p. 18), the most favoured method being to sign a petition (39% of those who registered a concern); followed by writing a letter (30 %) (p. 20).
  • 19% of Victorians donated time or money to environmental protection (p. 22).
  • Lack of time was the main reason why Victorians did not donate time or money or register a concern (44%) (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • About 94% of households in Victoria were connected to mains/town water in March 2004; virtually all households (99%) in Melbourne are connected to mains compared to 81% elsewhere in the state. This is lower than the national average of 85% of households outside capital cities connected to mains or town water (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of water for drinking for 84% of households in Victoria (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 93% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 88% of households that watered their garden (p. 40).
  • Melbourne households were more likely to use mains/town water for gardening than most other capital cities (96% compared to the national average of 90% for capital cities). Households outside Melbourne were least likely to use mains/town water for gardening (73%) than any other area outside a capital city (national average of 78%). These households were more likely to use rainwater tanks for this activity (10%) than in any other state (p. 40).
  • 60% of households outside Melbourne used mains/town as their main source of drinking water, compared to the national average of 67% of households outside capital cities. Under one-third (31%) of these households used rainwater tanks as their main source of drinking water, second highest only to areas outside Adelaide (66%) (p. 44).
  • Nearly 16% of households in Victoria sourced water from rainwater tanks; 6% in Melbourne compared to 41% outside the city. This compares to 31% of households outside capital cities sourcing water from rainwater tanks nationally (p. 38).
  • 18% of households in Victoria purchased bottled water, an increase from 14% in 2001. 6% of households relied on it as their main source of water for drinking (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • 16% of Victorian residents were not satisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking, a decrease from 22% in 2001. This was lower than the national average of 24% (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were taste (other than being salty) (43% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this); and chlorine (33%) (p. 48).
  • 78% of Victorian households had dual flush toilets in 2004, an increase from 71% in 2001. This was above the national average of 74%. 42% of households had reduced flow shower heads, an increase from 32% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • Nearly 56% of households in Victoria engaged in some form of water conservation practices in and around the dwelling. This was higher than any other state or territory and well above the national average of just under 47%. The number of Victorian households practising water conservation in and around the dwelling has been increasing steadily since 1994 (40% in 1994; 47% in 1998; 51% in 2001; 56% in 2004) (p. 55).
  • The most popular water conservation measures taken in the home were taking shorter showers and using full loads when washing clothes/dishes (both 26%). Victorian households took these measures more than any other state or territory. Just over one in five households (21%) also recycled and/or reused water in the home, an increase from 14% in 2001 (p. 55).
  • 93% of households with gardens in Victoria took measures to conserve water in the garden, the equal highest in the country along with South Australia. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (63% of households, an increase from 54% in 2001). Using recycled water in the garden was the next most popular measure, reported by nearly one-quarter of households in Victoria (23%), an increase from 13% in 2001 (p. 57).
  • The use of moveable sprinklers and fixed sprinkler systems by Victorian households has dramatically reduced since 2001 (23% down to 9% for moveable sprinklers; and 31% down to 17% for fixed sprinkler systems). These were some of the lowest levels of usage in the country. The most preferred method of hand watering increased from 69% in 2001 to 76% in 2004 (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • Almost nine in ten households in Victoria (89%) reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Recycled paper products (67% of households) and products with refillable containers (62% of households ) were the EFPs most commonly purchased by Victorian households (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most important reason why households don't buy any EFPs in Victoria (44%) (p. 67).
  • 49% of households in Victoria grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, 82% of which used some form of fertilisers. About 27% of households use pesticide or weedkiller when growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • Nearly 2 million (51%) people in Victoria aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey (p. 77).
  • Lack of time was the most common reason why people in Victoria did not visit a World Heritage Area or Park (37%); followed by age/health/inability (16%) (p. 80).
Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Queensland

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • About 1.5 million people in Queensland aged 18 years and over (54%) stated they were concerned about environmental problems, a decrease from 63% in 2001 (page 16).
  • Nearly 8% of Queenslanders registered an environmental concern in 2004 (p. 18), the most favoured method being the telephone (39% of those who registered a concern) (p. 20).
  • 19% of Queenslander donated time or money to environmental protection (p. 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the most significant reason why people in Queensland did not get involved in environmental actions (49%) (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • About 89% of households in Queensland were connected to mains/town water in March 2004; 98% in Brisbane and 81% elsewhere in the state. This was slightly lower than the national average of 85% of households outside capital cities connected to mains or town water (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of drinking water for 79% of households in Queensland (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 88% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 84% of households in Queensland (p. 40).
  • 17% of households in Queensland sourced water from rainwater tanks; 5% in Brisbane compared to 28% outside the city (p. 38).
  • 17% of households in Queensland purchased bottled water, an increase from 13% in 2001. 6% of households relied on bottled water as their main source of water for drinking (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • 28% of Queensland residents were not satisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking, compared with 30% in 2001. This was slightly higher than the national average of 24% (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were taste (other than being salty) (58% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this); and chlorine (32%) (p. 48). Queenslanders nominated taste (other than salty) more often than all other states and territories except Western Australia (p. 48).
  • Three-quarters of Queensland households had dual flush toilets in 2004, an increase from 62% in 2001. 44% of households had reduced flow shower heads, an increase from 37% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • 41% of households in Queensland engaged in some form of water conservation practices in and around the dwelling. This was the second lowest level in Australia (after Northern Territory). The most popular water conservation measure taken in the home was to turn off or repair dripping taps (19%); followed by taking shorter showers (15%); and using full loads when washing clothes/dishes (14%) (p. 55).
  • 90% of households with gardens in Queensland took measures to conserve water in the garden. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (53% of households); followed by watering early in the morning or late in the evening (18%); and using recycled water in the garden (14%). Queensland households employed these measures less often than most of the other states and territories (p. 57).
  • 21% of Queensland homes with gardens used a moveable sprinkler to water their garden, down from 29% in 2001; 20% used a fixed sprinkler system, down from 24% in 2001. The proportion of households using hand watering remained unchanged (67%) (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • About nine in ten households in Queensland (90%) reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Products with refillable containers (68%) and recycled paper products (67% of households) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in Queensland (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most common reason for not purchasing EFPs in Queensland (44%), an increase from 38% of households for which this was a factor in 2001 (p. 67).
  • About 42% of households in Queensland reported they grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, 84% of which reported that they used some form of fertilisers and 29% of used pesticides or weedkiller (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • Just over 1.5 million (54%) people in Queensland aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (35%) was the most important reason why people in Queensland did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park; followed by age/health/inability (17%) (p. 80).

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - South Australia

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • Nearly 63% of people in South Australia aged 18 years and over stated they were concerned about environmental problems. This was a decrease from 70% in 2001, but higher than the national average of 57% (page 16).
  • Nearly 8% of South Australians registered an environmental concern in 2004 (p. 18), signing a petition being the preferred method for those who did so (40%) (p. 20).
  • 23% of South Australians donated time or money to environmental protection, slightly higher than the national average of 20% (p. 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the most significant reason why people in South Australia did not get involved in environmental actions (45%) (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • 96% of households in South Australia were connected to mains/town water in March 2004; 99% in Adelaide compared to 88% elsewhere in the state (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of drinking water for 60% of households (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 92% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 85% of households (p. 40).
  • Households outside Adelaide were less reliant on mains/town water as their main source of water for bathing, showering and washing (74%) than any other state. Nearly one-quarter (24%) of these households used rainwater tanks as their primary water source for these activities (compared to the national average of 13% for households outside capital cities) (p. 42).
  • 72% of Adelaide households used mains/town water as their primary source of drinking water, compared to 89% for all capital cities combined. 13% of Adelaide households used rainwater tanks as their main source of drinking water, compared to the national average of 3% for capital cities (p. 44).
  • Outside Adelaide, just over one-quarter (26%) of households used mains/town water as their main source of drinking water. This compares to 67% of households outside capital cities nationally. Rainwater tanks were the primary source of drinking water for two thirds (66%) of households outside Adelaide, compared to less than one-quarter (24%) of households outside capital cities nationally (p. 44).
  • Despite South Australia's large reliance on rainwater tanks for drinking water, the proportion of households using rainwater tanks as their primary source of drinking water decreased significantly since 2001 (33% in 2001; 26% in 2004). The use of mains/town water as the primary drinking source increased from 50% in 2001 to 60% in 2004 (p. 45).
  • South Australian households sourced water from rainwater tanks more than in any other state or territory (48%, compared to a national average of 17%). In Adelaide, 38% of households have rainwater tanks, compared to a national average of less than 9% for capital cities. The proportion of households sourcing water from rainwater tanks increases to 78% outside Adelaide (compared to the national average of 31% for households outside capital cities) (p. 38).
  • 22% of South Australian households sourced water from purchased bottled water with 13% using it as their main source of drinking water (compared to the national average of 8%) (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • South Australian households used water filters in drinking water more often than any other state or territory (30% of households in 2004, an increase from 23% in 2001) (p. 46).
  • South Australians also had the highest level of dissatisfaction with the quality of their mains water for drinking (36%), although this was a decrease from 2001 (42% dissatisfied). This was considerably higher than the national average of 24% (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were taste (other than being salty) (57% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this, compared to 51% nationally); and chlorine (29%) (p. 48).
  • Just over three-quarters (76%) of South Australian households had dual flush toilets in 2004, an increase from 72% in 2001. Nearly half of all households (49%) had reduced flow shower heads, the highest level in the country. This was an increase from 37% in 2001(p. 54).
  • South Australian households, however, had one of the lower levels of participation in water conservation practices inside and around the dwelling (42%), compared to a national average of just under 47%. The most popular water conservation measure taken in the home was to recycle and/or reuse water (15% of households) (p. 55).
  • 93% of households with gardens in South Australia took measures to conserve water in the garden, the equal highest in the country along with Victoria. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (63% of households), an increase from 54% in 2001; followed by watering early in the morning or late in the evening (38%, up from 26% in 2001); and planting native shrubs or trees to conserve water (26%, up from 17% in 2001). The use of these measures was well above the national average. (p. 57).
  • 30% of South Australian homes used a moveable sprinkler in 2004, (down from 44% in 2001) compared to 15% nationally. 31% of homes used a fixed sprinkler system (down from 36% in 2001), compared to 22% nationally (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • 87% of households in South Australia reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Recycled paper products (64%) and products with refillable containers (58%) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in South Australia, although they were less popular than in other states and territories (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most important reason for not purchasing EFPs in South Australia (39%) (p. 67).
  • About 54% of households in South Australia grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, with only Tasmanians more inclined to grow fruit or vegetables. 81% of households used some form of fertilisers and about 26% of households used pesticide or weedkiller (pp 69, 70).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • Just over half a million (49%) people in South Australia aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (34%) was the most important reason why people in South Australia did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park; followed by age/health/inability (17%) (p. 80).

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Western Australia

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • Nearly 63% of people in Western Australia aged 18 years and over stated they were concerned about environmental problems, a decrease from 69% in 2001 (page 16).
  • 8% of Western Australians registered an environmental concern in 2004, a decrease from nearly 12% in 2001 (p. 18). The preferred method of registering a concern was signing a petition (35% of people who registered a concern) (p. 20).
  • 24% of Western Australians donated time or money to environmental protection, above the national average of 20% (p. 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the most common reason why people in Western Australia did not get involved in environmental actions (46%) (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • 95% of households in Western Australia were connected to mains/town water in March 2004; 98% in Perth compared to 85% elsewhere in the state (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of water for drinking for 82% of households in Western Australia (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 94% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 74% of households (p. 40).
  • Perth households are less reliant on mains/town water as the main source of garden water than any other capital city (73% compared to 90% for capital cities nationally). This is due to Perth's relatively large use of bore/well water for this purpose (26%). Nationally, only 5% of households in capital cities rely on bore/well water as their main source of water for gardening (p. 40).
  • 12% of households in Western Australia sourced water from rainwater tanks; 6% in Perth compared to 31% for the rest of the state (p. 38).
  • 19% of Western Australian households purchased bottled water with 8% of households relying on it as their main source of water for drinking (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • Western Australian households used water filters in drinking water more often than any other state or territory except South Australia (29% of households in 2004, an increase from 24% in 2001) (p. 46).
  • One-third of Western Australians were dissatisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking, the second highest level of dissatisfaction after South Australia. This was a slight increase from 2001 (30% dissatisfied), with Western Australia one of only two states/territories to report an increase in dissatisfaction (along with the Australian Capital Territory) (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were taste (other than being salty) (60% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this, compared to 51% nationally); and chlorine (39%, compared to 31% nationally) (p. 48).
  • Nearly 81% of Western Australian households had dual flush toilets in 2004, the highest level in the country (national average was 74%). This was an increase from 71% in 2001. Nearly 48% had reduced flow shower heads, the second highest level in the country after South Australia. This was an increase from 40% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • 46% of Western Australian households engaged in water conservation practices inside and around the dwelling, compared to 43% in 2001. The most popular water conservation measure taken in the home was to recycle and/or reuse water (21%), a large increase from 2001 (14%). 16% of households used full loads when washing clothes or dishes; and took shorter showers (p. 55).
  • 92% of households with gardens in Western Australia took measures to conserve water in the garden. The use of mulch to conserve water was most widespread in Western Australia (69% of households). Western Australian households were also most likely to plant native shrubs or trees to conserve water (28%, up from 20% in 2001). Nearly one-quarter (24%) of households also watered early in the morning or late in the evening as a water conservation measure (p. 57).
  • Fixed sprinkler systems are more popular in Western Australia than any other state or territory with 63% of households in Western Australia using this method to water their gardens, compared to 22% nationally. A timer system is also most popular in Western Australia than most other states and territories (22%, compared to 9% nationally). The preferred method of hand watering (65% of households) increased significantly since 2001 (53%). (p. 60)
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • Nine in ten households in Western Australia (90%) reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Recycled paper products (67%) and products with refillable containers (66%) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in Western Australia (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most important reason for not purchasing EFPs in Western Australia (36%) (p. 67).
  • About 45% of households in Western Australia grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, 89% of which reported that they used some form of fertilisers and about 25% of households used pesticide or weedkiller (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • 60% of people in Western Australia aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey. This was well above the national average of 52% (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (37%) was the most important reason why people in Western Australia did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park; followed by age/health/inability (15%) (p. 80).

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Tasmania

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • Nearly 52% of people in Tasmania aged 18 years and over stated they were concerned about environmental problems, a decrease from 60% in 2001, and below the national average of 57% (page 16).
  • 11% of Tasmanians registered an environmental concern, the highest level in the country (p. 18). Over 50% of Tasmanians who registered a concern did so by signing a petition (51%). Tasmanians were also most likely to participate in a demonstration (21% of those who registered a concern, compared with 4% nationally) (p. 20).
  • Nearly 20% of Tasmanians donated time or money to protect the environment (20%) (p. 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the most common reason why people in Tasmania did not get involved in environmental actions (43%) (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • 85% of households in Tasmania were connected to mains/town water in March 2004; 96% in Hobart compared to 77% elsewhere in the state. This was considerably lower than the national average of 85% of households outside capital cities connected to mains or town water (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of water for drinking for 77% of households in Tasmania (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 85% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 84% of households (p. 40).
  • Hobart had a higher rate of use of mains/town water for gardening (97%) than any other capital city (national average of 90% for capital cities) (p. 40).
  • Nearly 20% of households in Tasmania sourced water from rainwater tanks; 6% in Hobart compared to 29% for the rest of the state (p. 38).
  • 16% of households used purchased bottled water (an increase from 9% in 2001), with 5% of households relying on it as their main source of water for drinking (p. 38 and p. 45).
  • 18% of Tasmanians were dissatisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking, a decrease from 23% in 2001. This was lower than the national average of 24% (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were taste (other than being salty) (44% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this, compared to 51% nationally); and chlorine (37%, compared to 31% nationally) (p. 48).
  • 65% of Tasmanian households had dual flush toilets in 2004, the lowest level in the country (national average was 74%), although this was an increase from 58% in 2001. 41% had reduced flow shower heads, an increase from 36% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • 44% of Tasmanian households took steps to conserve water inside and around the dwelling, similar to 2001. Turning off/repairing dripping taps or leaks and having full loads when washing dishes or clothes (both 20%) were the most popular practices adopted in Tasmania (p. 55).
  • 90% of households with gardens in Tasmania took measures to conserve water in the garden. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (52% of households, unchanged from 2001). The next most popular measure was watering early in the morning or late in the evening (30% of households). Tasmanian households were most likely not to water their lawn area (14%, compared to 7% nationally) (p. 57).
  • Tasmanians used moveable sprinklers to water their gardens more than any other state or territory (34%, compared to 15% nationally), although this was a decrease from 41% in 2001. The preferred method of hand watering was used by 65% of households (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • Nine in ten households in Tasmania (90%) reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs).
  • Recycled paper products (70%) and products with refillable containers (63%) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in Tasmania (p. 65).
  • Not interested/too much effort was the reason cited most often by Tasmanian households for not purchasing EFPs (35%). This was cited more often by Tasmania than any other state or territory (national average of 22%). Cost was a factor for just under one-third (32%) of Tasmanian households (p. 67).
  • 59% of households in Tasmania grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, the highest level in the country. 82% of these households used some form of fertilisers and about 33% of households used pesticide or weedkiller (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • 56% of people in Tasmania aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (32%) was the most important reason why people in Tasmania did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park, although Tasmanians cited this less often than all other states and territories. Age/health/inability (21%) was the next most significant reason for not visiting these areas (p. 80)

Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Northern Territory

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • 46% of people in the Northern Territory aged 18 years and over stated they were concerned about environmental problems, the lowest level in the country compared to 57% nationally (page 16).
  • About 4% of Northern Territory residents registered an environmental concern, and 20% donated time or money to environmental protection (pp. 18 and 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the main reason people in the Northern Territory did not participate in environmental actions (40%).

Water use and conservation
  • 95% of households in the Northern Territory were connected to mains/town water in March 2004 (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of water for drinking for 89% of households in the Northern Territory (p. 44); main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for 95% of households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 93% of households (p. 40).
  • 79% of Northern Territory households had dual flush toilets in 2004, the second highest level after Western Australia (national average was 74%). Northern Territory had the lowest level of reduced flow shower heads in the country (21%, compared to a national average of 44%) (p. 54).
  • Only one-third of households in the Northern Territory took steps to conserve water inside and around the dwelling in 2004. The most popular measures undertaken in the home were turning off/repairing dripping taps or leaks (18%) and having full loads when washing clothes or dishes (16%) (p. 55).
  • About 90% of households with gardens in Northern Territory took measures to conserve water in the garden. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (68%, an increase from 50% in 2001). Northern Territory households were also more likely to water early in the morning or late in the evening (37%, compared to 23% nationally) (p. 57).
  • A fixed sprinkler system was the most popular method of watering the garden in the Northern Territory (46%, compared to 22% nationally). Only 28% of Northern Territory households hand watered their gardens, a decrease from 46% in 2001. This compared with 71% of households that used hand watering nationally (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • 87% of households in the Northern Territory reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Products with refillable containers (67%) and recycled paper products (64% of households) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in the Northern Territory (p. 65).
  • About 42% of households in the Northern Territory grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, over 90% of which used some form of fertilisers, and about 18% of households used pesticide or weedkiller (pp 69, 70 & 72).
Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • 61% of people in the Northern Territory aged 18 years and over reported that they had visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey, the highest level in the country (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (43%) was the most important reason why people in the Northern Territory did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park, and this was cited more often in the Northern Territory than anywhere else (p. 80).


Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices - Australian Capital Territory

Environmental concerns and involvement
  • 69% of people in the Australian Capital Territory aged 18 years and over stated they were concerned about environmental problems, the highest in the country (compared with 57% of people nationally) (page 16).
  • Around 6% of Australian Capital Territory residents registered an environmental concern (p. 18), and nearly 25% donated time or money to environmental protection (p. 22).
  • 'Lack of time' was the most common reason (49%) why people in the Australian Capital Territory did not get involved in environmental actions (p. 23).

Water use and conservation
  • All (100%) households in the Australian Capital Territory were connected to mains/town water in March 2004 (p. 38).
  • Mains/town water was the main source of water for drinking for 93% of households in the Australian Capital Territory (p. 44); the main source of water for bathing, showering and washing for all households (p. 42); and main source for watering the garden for 98% of households (p. 40).
  • 3% of households in the Australian Capital Territory sourced water from rainwater tanks, compared to 17% nationally (p. 38).
  • Over one-quarter (26%) of Australian Capital Territory households purchased bottled water in 2004, a large increase from 11% in 2001. This was the highest rate in the country. 6% of households relied on it as their main source of water for drinking (p. 39 and p. 45).
  • 13% of Australian Capital Territory households used water filters in drinking water, less than the national average of 26% (p. 46).
  • Just under 10% of Australian Capital Territory residents were dissatisfied with the quality of their mains water for drinking, far below the national average of 24% (p. 47).
  • The main concerns with mains drinking water were chlorine (40% of people dissatisfied with the quality nominated this, compared with 31% nationally); and taste (other than salty) (40%, compared to 51% nationally) (p. 48).
  • 71% of Australian Capital Territory households had dual flush toilets in 2004, an increase from 58% in 2001. 42% of households had reduced flow shower heads, an increase from 33% in 2001 (p. 54).
  • 51% of Australian Capital Territory residents took steps to conserve water inside and around the dwelling in 2004, the second highest after Victoria. This was a significant increase from 31% in 2001. The most popular measure undertaken in the home was recycling and/or reusing water, practiced by 28% of households. This was a significant increase from 10% in 2001. 20% of residents took shorter showers to conserve water, an increase from 9% in 2001 (p. 55).
  • 92% of households with gardens in the Australian Capital Territory took measures to conserve water in the garden. Mulching to conserve water was the most popular measure (66% of households, an increase from 57% in 2001). The next most popular measure was to use recycled water in the garden, with more than one-quarter of all households with gardens (26%) using this, an increase from 7% in 2001 (p. 57).
  • There was a dramatic decrease in the use of moveable and fixed sprinkler systems in the Australian Capital Territory. 13% of households with gardens used moveable sprinkler in 2004, a dramatic decrease from 42% in 2001. 23% of households used a fixed sprinkler system, a decrease from 40% in 2001. Three-quarters of households used hand watering in 2004, a large increase from 52% in 2001 (p. 60).
Use of environmentally friendly products, fertilisers and pesticides
  • Around 92% of households in the Australian Capital Territory reported they purchase Environmentally Friendly Products (EFPs) (p. 65).
  • Products with refillable containers (72%) and recycled paper products (71%) were the two EFPs most commonly purchased by households in the Australian Capital Territory. Australian Capital Territory households purchased all of the listed EFPs, except organically grown fruit and vegetables, more often than all other states and territories (p. 65).
  • Cost remains the most important reason for not purchasing any EFPs in the Australian Capital Territory (46%), and the Australian Capital Territory cited this more often than any other state or territory (national average 39%) (p. 67).
  • Over half (51%) of households in Australian Capital Territory grew fruit or vegetables in their garden, a decrease from 59% in 2001. 84% of these households used some form of fertilisers, and 27% of households used pesticide or weedkiller when growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens (pp 69, 70 & 72).

Use of World Heritage Areas, National and State Parks
  • 57% of people in the Australian Capital Territory aged 18 years and over visited a World Heritage Area, National or State Park in the 12 months prior to the survey, a decrease from 64% in 2001 (p. 77).
  • Lack of time (40%) was the most important reason why people in the Australian Capital Territory did not visit a World Heritage Area or a park, higher than the national average of 36% (p. 80).

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