4613.0 - Australia's Environment: Issues and Trends, 2007  
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GraphCONSUMPTION


Household consumption


Expressed in real terms (at. 2004-05 prices), household final consumption expenditure per capita rose from $10,400 in 1960-61 to $26,100 in 2005-06.

Growth in real household final consumption expenditure per capita was particularly strong between 1992-93 and 2005-06. After rising by 1.9% a year between 1960-61 and 1992-93, real household final consumption expenditure per capita increased by 2.6% a year between 1992-93 and 2005-06.

During 2005-06, nearly half (46%) of all household final consumption expenditure was accounted for by rent and other dwelling services, food, catering and transport. This expenditure was 51% greater in 2005-06 ($4,551) than it had been in 1985-86 ($3,020). This equates to an average annual rate of increase of 2.1%.

Generally, an increase in the volume (i.e. the quantity and/or quality) of goods and services consumed by people is regarded as progress (Endnote 1). However, reduced consumption of certain goods and services can indicate progress towards social and environmental goals such as improved health and cleaner air.

There has been strong growth in the volume of communication services consumed by Australians over recent decades. From a low base in 1985-86, per person real household final consumption expenditure on these services more than quadrupled by 2005-06 (an increase of 341% of 7.7% each year on average). Much of this growth is related to the emergence and popularity of new communication technologies. In February 1996, only 24% of households owned or paid for a mobile phone. The proportion of households who had access to a mobile phone jumped to 72% (when averaged across 2002). An increase in mobile phone usage and turnover is an issue for waste generation and disposal (Endnote 2).

Real household final consumption expenditure per person
Graph: Real household final consumption expenditure per person
Note: Volume measure; reference year 2004-05.
Source: ABS, Australian System of National Accounts, 2005-06 (cat. no. 5204.0); Australian Historical Population Statistics, 2006 (cat. no. 3105.0.65.001); Australian Demographic Statistics, September 2006 (cat. no. 3101.0).


Endnotes
  1. ABS, Australian Social Trends 2007, cat. no. 4102.0, Canberra, p.158. <back
  2. ABS, Australian Social Trends 2007, cat. no. 4102.0, Canberra, p.161. <back

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