1370.0 - Measures of Australia's Progress, 2013  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 14/11/2013   
   Page tools:
Measures of Australia's Progress


Australians aspire to healthy natural and built environments, which they connect to, benifit from, care for and sustain for future generations

Measures of Australia's Progress (MAP) presents a view of Australian life divided into four main areas: society, economy, environment and governance. During our latest consultation, we asked Australians about what is important to them for national progress for each of these areas. For the environment, they identified the aspects they felt were most important and what they thought Australia should aspire to (or aim for) to achieve progress. We have sought to provide indicators that will capture the spirit of, and measure, these aspirations for environmental progress. The statement at the top of this page is the overall aspiration Australians had for the environment.

In the context of MAP, the environment, both natural and built, is fundamental to the quality of life and sense of wellbeing of Australians, as well as providing key inputs to the economy. Increasing population and economic pressures have caused many people to be increasingly concerned about the state of both the Australian and wider global environment

A healthy natural environment is fundamental to the quality of life and wellbeing of Australians. It is also integral to a strong economy. Despite this, there has been a tendency until recently to take clean water, clean air and natural attractions such as the Great Barrier Reef for granted. However, the environment faces increasing pressures from growing populations and thriving economies, threatening to endanger the benefits that the environment provides to society. As a result, many people have become increasingly concerned about the state of the environment and its long-term health, both in Australia and globally.

What did Australians say?

Australians are interested in other aspects of the environment, as well as its health. Many people expressed aspirations in the areas of working together to protect and sustain the environment, ensuring that we can better appreciate it both now and in the future.

The quality of our built environments and the significant impacts they have on people's lives, is also an issue of growing importance; particularly given that the vast majority of Australians now live in urban areas.

Main themes of environment

Our recent consultation agreed on six main themes Australians thought where important for environmental progress and where possible, MAP provides progress indicators for these themes and their elements. As there are many newly emerging areas of interest from the consultation process, we don't have measures for all of these. However, MAP is an evolving product and we will seek to fill data gaps as suitable measures become available.

To view the environment measures included in MAP, click on the themes below to see how Australia is progressing in that area: