4602.0.55.002 - Environmental Issues: Waste Management, Transport and Motor Vehicle Usage, Mar 2012 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 26/10/2012   
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Any responsible adult

The Any Responsible Adult (ARA) method of interviewing is used in a number of ABS household surveys. This involves obtaining information about all the persons in a selected household who are selected in the survey from a responsible adult with whom the interviewer makes contact (rather than speaking to each individual personally).

Balance of state/territory

Comprises the balance of the six states and the balance of the Northern Territory (i.e. excludes the state and the Northern Territory capital cities and the Australian Capital Territory).

Capital city

The areas determining the six states and Northern Territory capital cities are defined as the Statistical Divisions for those capital cities as in the Statistical Geography Volume 1 - Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC), Jul 2006 (cat. no. 1216.0). The Australian Capital Territory is defined as a capital city for this publication.

Central collection point other than a dump/waste transfer station

Includes any central collection point other than the dump/waste transfer station for re-using or recycling materials. For example, containers or bins provided at local shops, scout halls, schools as well as other central collection points for recycling cans, bottles, paper, plastic bags.


The end product of breaking down organic matter such as plant and animal scraps into the original nutrient form.


Two people in a registered or de facto marriage, who usually live in the same household.

Day-to-day travel

Refers to any of the places the respondent travels to as part of their normal daily activities (e.g. shopping, visiting friends/relatives) other than travel to work or full-time study.

Dependent children

All persons aged under 15 years; and people aged 15-24 years who are full-time students, have a parent in the household and do not have a partner or child of their own in the household.


Land where waste is dumped and later buried. Also referred to as rubbish tip or landfill.


A suite of rooms contained within a building which are self-contained and intended for long-term residential use. To be self-contained, the suite of rooms must possess cooking and bathing facilities as building fixtures. Examples of types of dwelling include: separate house; semi-detached, row or terrace house or townhouse; flat, unit or apartment; and other dwellings, including caravan, cabin, houseboat, and house or flat attached to a shop.

Electronic equipment

Includes computers, mobile phones, TVs, fax machines, scanners, monitors, hand-held devices (e.g. MP3 players, ipods etc), printers, cables, mouse and keyboards, stereos, DVD players video game consoles, set top boxes.


Two or more people, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering, and who usually live in the same household. A separate family is formed for each married couple, or for each set of parent-child relationships where only one parent is present.

Food scraps or waste

Any kitchen or food scraps that may be used for composting, whether that is personal composting or given to an organisation for composting.

Fuel types

Regular unleaded petrol - petrol that has zero lead content.

Premium unleaded - 95 RON and 98 RON unleaded petrol. High octane fuel designed for high performance unleaded engines.

Ethanol blend - E10 and E5 (ethanol and regular unleaded petrol blends).

Diesel - a fuel used by vehicles with diesel engines which offers better fuel economy compared to the use of regular unleaded petrol in equivalent engines.

LPG - Liquefied Petroleum Gas. Some motor vehicles have LPG as their only source of fuel.

LPG/Petrol - Some vehicles have tanks for both Liquid Petroleum Gas and unleaded petrol and have the ability to switch between use of the two different fuel types.

Biodiesel - A renewable fuel made from plant oils that can be used in a conventional diesel engine.

Petrol/Electric hybrid - Motor vehicles that run on a combined petrol and electric engine.

Electric - Registered motor vehicles or scooters that run completely on electricity without petrol.

Garden chemicals or their containers

Includes any pesticides or weedicides the household may use in their garden to control weeds, insects, fungi, snails, etc. Excludes garden fertilisers.

Garden waste

Includes any garden waste that may be used for composting or mulching, whether that is personal or given to an organisation for composting or mulching. Excludes any garden waste or lawn clippings removed by person(s) hired for gardening.


Includes glass bottles and jars.

Group household

A household consisting of two or more unrelated people where all people are aged 15 years and over. There are no reported couple relationships, parent-child relationships or other blood relationships in these households.

Hazardous waste disposal service or facility

These are services that are equipped to handle hazardous waste items. Specifically, they are defined as being special services that collect hazardous waste items from the home, special areas at the dump/transfer station, businesses or shops that accept the return of these items (e.g. returning used motor vehicle oil to a mechanic, returning old and/or unused medicines to a chemist), or a central collection point other than the dump/waste transfer station.

Hazardous waste items

Leftover household products that contain corrosive, toxic, ignitable, or reactive ingredients are considered to be household hazardous waste. Includes hazardous chemicals, including pesticides, cleaning products, pharmaceuticals and other items that can be typically found around the home.


A group of residents of a dwelling who share common facilities and meals or who consider themselves to be a household. It is possible for a dwelling to contain more than one household, for example, where regular provision is made for groups to take meals separately and where persons consider their households to be separate.

Household appliances

Includes microwave ovens, toasters, hair dryers, electric shavers, sandwich makers, breadmakers, blenders, food processors, kettles.

Household items

Includes plastic bags and bottles, glass, aluminium and steel cans, paper, garden waste, food scraps or waste, electronic equipment, motor oil.

Lone person household

A household consisting of a person living alone.

Main form of transport

Refers to the form of transport used to travel the greatest distance for the usual trip to work, school, college or university. For example, if a person travels in a car as a passenger for 5 kilometres and walks the remaining 1 kilometre to work, then the main form of transport is “car - as passenger”, irrespective of the time each part of the journey takes.

Motor vehicle

Any motor vehicle or motor cycle weighing up to 4.5 tonnes Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM). Includes passenger vehicles such as sedans, station wagons, 4WDs, passenger vans, people movers, light commercial vehicles such as utilities, small trucks, vans, panel vans and cab chassis. Excludes motor homes, camper vans, heavy trucks, (i.e. trucks weighing greater than 4.5 tonnes GVM), articulated trucks, buses, other heavy vehicles (e.g. ambulances, cranes, farm machinery).

Multiple family household

A household containing two or more families. Unrelated individuals may also be present.

Municipal kerbside recycling collection

Roadside collection of domestic waste separated for the purpose of recycling or reuse of those materials. Kerbside recycling is usually a service conducted regularly or as a one-off specially organised service, provided by local government and funded largely through rate collection.

Non-family household

Consists of unrelated people only. A non-family household can be either a person living alone or a group household.

One family household

A household containing only one family. Unrelated individuals may also be present.

One parent with dependent child(ren)

A one family household comprising a lone parent with at least one dependent child.

Other one family household

A household comprising:

  • one couple, with their non-dependent child(ren) only
  • one couple, with or without their non-dependent child(ren), plus other relative(s)
  • one couple, with or without their non-dependent child(ren), plus unrelated individual(s)
  • one parent, with his/her non-dependent child(ren), with or without relative(s) and unrelated individual(s) or
  • two or more related individuals where the relationship is not a couple relationship or a parent-child relationship (e.g. two brothers)

Public transport

Any passenger transport service, excluding taxi services, that is organised and provided by any company or co-operative legal entity, either government or privately owned, where a fee for service is charged, and is available for use by all members of the community. It excludes charter services provided by employers/schools.


The return of a disposed product to the production system where it is remade into either the same product or something different.

Registered motor vehicle

Motorcycle or motor vehicle weighing up to 4.5 tonnes Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM) that is legally registered.

Registered motor vehicle usually kept at home

Usually kept at home means that the vehicle is kept or garaged at home for the majority of the time and the household's members use it. However, the vehicle does not need to be owned by anyone in the household. The vehicle must be legally registered. Includes household vehicles parked on the street and vehicles not owned by anyone in the household (e.g. a company or employer's car).


Using the same item more than once, preferably many times, rather than disposing of it after only one use.

Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas (SEIFA)

SEIFA is a product developed especially for those interested in the assessment of the welfare of Australian communities. The ABS has developed four indexes to allow ranking of regions/areas, providing a method of determining the level of social and economic well-being in each region.

Each of the indexes summarise different aspects of the socio-economic status of the people living in those areas. The index refers to the attributes of the area (the Census Collector's District) in which a person lives, not to the socio-economic situation of a particular individual. The index used in this publication was compiled following the 2006 Census. For further information about the SEIFAs, see Information Paper: Census of Population and Housing - Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas, Australia (cat. no. 2039.0).

The four indexes are:
  • Index of Relative Socio-economic advantage and disadvantage: includes attributes such as households with low incomes and people with a tertiary education.
  • Index of Relative Socio-economic disadvantage: includes attributes such as low income, low educational attainment, high unemployment and dwellings without motor vehicles.
  • Index of economic resources: includes attributes such as income, housing expenditure and assets of households.
  • Index of education and occupation: includes attributes relating to the educational and occupational characteristics of communities, like the proportion of people with a higher qualification or those employed in a skilled occupation.


Waste is generally defined as any product or substance that has no further use for the person or organisation that generated it, and which is, or will be, discarded. Wastes may be solid, liquid or gaseous and can be hazardous or non-hazardous.

Waste collection or drop-off service

A service that allows for the collection or drop-off of household waste. Specifically, they involve having waste items collected from the house by private collection or as part of municipal kerbside recycling, taking waste to a special area at the dump/waste transfer station for recycling or reuse, or taking waste to a central collection point other than the dump/waste transfer station (including a business or shop).

Waste transfer station

A place where waste is collected and transferred to a larger truck that takes it to the rubbish tip. Also a drop off point for collecting some items that can be recycled or reused.

White goods

Includes fridges, dishwashers, washing machines, dryers.


All persons aged 18 years and over who, during the reference week:
  • worked for one hour or more for pay, profit, commission or payment in kind in a job or business, or on a farm (comprising employees, employers and own account workers); or
  • worked for one hour or more without pay in a family business or on a farm (i.e. contributing family workers); or
  • were employees who had a job but were not at work and were:
      • away from work for less than four weeks up to the end of the reference week; or
      • away from work for more than four weeks up to the end of the reference week and received pay for some or all of the four week period to the end of the reference week; or
      • away from work as a standard work or shift arrangement; or
      • on strike or locked out; or
      • on workers' compensation and expected to return to their job; or
  • were employers or own account workers who had a job, business or farm, but were not at work.