1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2008  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 07/02/2008   
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February 7, 2008
Embargoed 11.30 am (AEDT)
ABS sums up the nation - more kids, bigger houses, but greener

We are having more kids, living in bigger houses, but are environmentally more conservative, according to the snapshot of the nation released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) in its 2008 Year Book Australia.

The 2008 Year Book Australia was launched by the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, His Excellency Major General Michael Jeffery AC CVO MC (Retd) at a function in Canberra.

At the launch the Australian Statistician, Brian Pink announced that all 90 volumes of the Year Book Australia, going back to the first edition published in 1908, are now available free of charge from the ABS website.

"The Year Book Australia is a magnificent window into Australia showing where we have come from and where we are going", said Brian Pink. "Now with all historical Year Books freely available in digital format on the ABS website for posterity, the community can easily chart the course of the nation."

"The release of the 2008 Year Book is an opportune time to extend our thanks to the people and businesses of Australia for their continued support."

More details:

The last few years has seen an increase in Australia's fertility rate after a long period of falling fertility. In 2005 the fertility rate reached around 1.8 babies per woman on average. Fertility after World War II peaked at 3.5 babies per woman in 1961.

Australians are living in larger houses and yet fewer people are living in them. Since 1976 the average number of bedrooms per dwelling has increased (from 2.8 to 3.1 in 2005-06). However, during the same period the average number of people per household has declined (from 3.1 to 2.5).

Australians are becoming better water conservators. Australian households reduced their water consumption by 8% between 2000–01 and 2004–05 (from 2,278 gigalitres to 2,108 gigalitres).

More details are in the 2008 Year Book Australia (cat. no. 1301.0).

Media note:
To assist media in their reporting, summary story-lines are available from Media Story Leads - Year Book Australia.

The Governor-General's speech is available at http://www.gg.gov.au/governorgeneral/speech.php?id=371