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Knowing our nation, live radio scripts, Feb 2000
 
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MEDIA RELEASE

February 17, 2000
Embargoed 11:30am (AEST)
16/2000

Knowing our nation, live radio scripts

Attention: program producers, announcers

"KNOWING OUR NATION"
Two batches of 8x30 second (approx) Live Radio Reads: Series Three


Script One: MIND YOUR OWN WARPLANE

Like to do an oil change on an F111 aircraft?

A new defence strategy is to get industry to help mind the shop, and the job of servicing our F111s and C130 freighters is being market-tested right now.

This financial year our defence forces will spend $60 million on new equipment on top of the $2.7 billion already allocated to equipment that's getting more and more sophisticated.

Fewer permanent personnel answer the bugle these days. In ten years the number has dropped from 70-thousand to 50-thousand. Reserves grew by just 2,452 in the same time.

Quick march to the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book. For other great facts check abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.

Script Two: A LITTLE BRICK VENEER IN THE WEST

Aussies cling to that quarter acre in the suburbs, still calling "emoh-ruo" home.

In an average year 98,600 of us move into the new HOUSE ... only 39,400 into the new APARTMENT. We spent nearly $12 billion on those houses and just over $5 billion to be "close to everything you love."

Does it get dearer to build every year? Bet on it. Sydney leads the way, up 10.3 points in five years and 1.9 points in the last twelve months.

It's in the book — The Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book, or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Three: LET THE SUN DRY THE CLOTHES

So, you're a conservationist... hooked up to a renewable power source yet?

Within ten years electricity companies and big businesses will have to get some of their power from renewable sources ... that's solar, wind, hydro or land fill gas.

Ninety-nine percent of the power in Tasmania is hydro-generated but most states get less than two percent of their power from renewable sources.

As for you and I ... only three percent of Aussie homes use any form of renewable power. Most of us just didn't know that you could.

Sun wind and water in the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Four: YOU DO WHAT?

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who's the biggest boss of all?

Most of us sell things for a living. 920-thousand make things and 287-thousand move them about.

If you think there's always someone to tell you what to do, you're right. 579-thousand of us teach something.

Just 52-thousand provide the electricity, gas and water to make our world go around... think about that..

And Oh yes, It takes 294-thousand to lend us the money, count the money and insure us against losing the money.

Want to know where you stand? It's in the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.

Script Five: FARM FRESH FISH

It's four to one your next plate of seafood comes off a farm. Tuna, salmon and trout are the big three fin fish but $33 million worth of the prawns we eat never saw the sea.

Want to get into a growth industry? Farm fish. In three years production has jumped by 22 percent.

The big money is in farmed pearl oysters, about a hundred and ninety million dollars worth a year. The kind you eat "au naturel" are worth 44 million a year.

Get your catch in the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Six: LEAVE SCHOOL ... START STUDYING

If you're on your way from work to study you're not on your own.

Two million Aussies between 15 and 64 take on additional study every year and in most cases their boss is helping.

Seventy-eight percent of us at work got some type of training last year, most on the job, but one in five put in extra hours.

Want qualifications and reckon you'll wait? Don't. Around the mid twenties the bright lights call. It's two to one that if you haven't started by then, you won't.

Open your books at the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Seven: HI HO, HI HO

Miners take a bow. Man or woman you work longer hours than anyone else in the country ... something like nine hours a week more than the average.

Men on the farm, in the forest or fishing put in close to 48 hours a week, and if you work in the cultural and recreational services industry, that drops to thirty five and a half.

If you've got a full time job you might want to hang on to it. Part time work is on the increase and, man or woman, about 15 and a half hours a week will have to pay for the rent and groceries.

For everything you need to know about our nation, look up the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au.

Script Eight: A HUNDRED YEARS AGO

Slaves were harvesting our sugar crop a hundred years ago. The Government paid extra for crops grown and harvested by whites only.

Times were tough. A third of us were working on farms. The whole country had been in drought for two years and would be for another three.

Half of our sheep and almost half of the cattle had died and the wheat crop was down to less than one bag an acre.

We were trying and failing to grow cotton and coffee but did manage 24 million litres of wine.

It’s all in Australian Bureau of Statistics 2000 Year Book or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


ABS Year Book Live Reads — Series Four

Script One: WHISTLE BLOWER

Who says nobody writes letters anymore? Last year posties blew their whistle outside eight million houses and one million businesses.

Little wonder. Between us we stuck the stamps on more than four billion letters and parcels, sent 168-million overseas and got 164-million from the old countries.

But we are slowly losing post offices. In the last three years fifty four don't get letters any more.

Drop a line to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, get the 2000 Year Book or visit abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Two: STAR LIGHT .. STAR BRIGHT

Think diamonds and you think South Africa right? Wrong.

We lead the world in diamond exports along with less exotic things like coal, bauxite, lead and mineral sands.

When it comes to precious metals, we're number three gold exporter but we don't figure in the silver or platinum stakes. Still, number two at iron ore and uranium is pretty impressive.

Diamonds!.. true. Six hundred million dollars worth from the wilds of Western Australia to the gem dealers of Belgium and the UK.

Research the book, the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book, or visit abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.

Script Three: PAST PERFECT ...FUTURE SAFE

There are more than 12,000 places in Australia that we all think are special enough to make sure they're around for the kids to see.

Lumped together we call them the national estate. They could be anything from an abandoned cattleman's hut, to a rock carving, to a whole suburb.

Some aren't even in what we'd think of as Australia but on the tiny islands around us.

If you think we don't care about things like that ask one of the almost three and a half million people who visited one of our national parks last year.

Treasures for all in the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book, or search the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Four: EVEN MONEY YOU DON'T KNOW THE ANSWER

Bet you don't know how much we spend on gambling in a year.

Seven billion? Nine billion?.... not even close. Try eleven billion dollars and that's not counting SP bookies and card nights.

We spend twice as much as we did ten years ago at 2,500 registered clubs, 13 casinos and would you believe one hundred and thirty four lotteries? You can even have a flutter in a quarter of our pubs and bars.

Who wins? Well state governments take about four billion dollars in taxes.

Who loses? Average it out and it costs each adult about eight hundred and twenty dollars a year.

For everything you need to know about our nation get the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book, or visit abs.gov.au.

Script Five: THE STUFF OF LIFE

Reduce the cost of living.... Stop eating.

Every three months a gaggle of commentators appear on television arguing about the CPI.

It's not a virus, just a measure of the change in the price of things we buy to stay alive.

One hundred and one individual items from steaks to cars.

They measure the prices every three months in our capital cities. Last year Brisbane was the dearest place to live, Perth just beat Melbourne home as the cheapest.

Some prices went up, some went down.... the biggest rise was in the price of food.

Consumed with figures? Check out the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book, or visit abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.


Script Six THE OTHER HALF

How Australia has changed! In the last thirty years the number of us getting some income from the Government has almost trebled.

We're getting older .... one and a half million of us get some aged pension ... and it's easier to get.

Only 13 percent of people over 65 don't get any income from the Government ... for well over half, the aged pension is their only source of income.

We're investing more in the future too. Fifteen percent of us who get something from the Government are students.

And just as well. Compared to the sixties, six times as many of us are getting unemployment benefits.

Our changing face is in the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book, or on the net at abs.gov.au. Everything you need to know about our nation.

Script Seven: TIMBER — THE INS AND OUTS

DIY -- you can do it!

And when you start on that patio extension, chances are that some of the timber will have travelled from NZ or North America.

We need to buy about two point seven billion dollars worth of timber products every year ... this for a country that's twenty percent covered by trees!

Of course we export timber too, and wood chips, and paper, and paper board products. And we import ....what? timber and paper and paper board products.

We're farming more timber every year, and not just pine trees. In WA there's more hardwood than pines grown on plantations and there's more native forest in private hands than there are wheat paddocks in Australia.

Aussie paper in the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book. For other great information about our nation visit abs.gov.au.


Script Eight: I.T. MEANS DOLLARS

No wonder technology stocks are booming. The growth in computer use in Australia is just a blur.

Six years ago less than half of our businesses were using computers. When we counted two years ago the figure was 65 percent and climbing.

There are three personal computers for every ten people employed in Australia and three percent of our workforce is now in the information technology industry. Each one of them supports 27 PC users.

The mining industry can't live without PCs, over eighty percent of the workforce uses a computer, and about half have access to the internet.

An email address is nothing special these days. More than a third of businesses have one, closer to half in some industries.

Surf the net at abs.gov.au or get the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ 2000 Year Book. Everything you need to know about our nation.

See Parts One and Two

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