4602.2 - Household Water, Energy Use and Conservation, Victoria, Oct 2009 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/06/2010  First Issue
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Air conditioner

An apparatus for controlling the temperature of an enclosed space. It can be portable or fixed into the structure of the dwelling, usually in the wall or ceiling. Common types of air conditioner include split systems, ducted air conditioning, reverse cycle and evaporative air coolers.

Annual household income

Gross income received by all households members in the 12 months prior to the survey from any of the following sources: wages or salaries, government pension or allowance, investments, superannuation, or any other regular source.

Bore water

A source of ground water brought to the surface by pump or windmill. Households can access bore water from a single household bore (used by one household only) or a multiple household bore (where a bore on a property is used by households on adjoining properties).

Bottled gas

Gas provided in a large bottle or canister which is located near the house. A gas retailer may remove empty canisters and replace them with new ones. Bottled gas specifically used for outdoor barbecues was excluded from the survey.

Cathode ray tube (CRT) television

A television that uses a vacuum tube containing an electron gun and a fluorescent screen to create images in the form of light emitted from the fluorescent screen.


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.

Energy source

Any power source or material (such as wood, coal, gas, solar or oil) which can produce heat or power. This includes energy or fuel used for heating, cooking, hot water or lighting, but excludes fuel for cars, lawn mowers etc, outdoor barbeques that use bottled gas and solar garden lights.

Flat, unit or apartment

These dwellings usually share a common entrance foyer or stairwell, although can be attached to houses, such as granny flats, and houses converted into two or more flats.

Frequency of public transport use

Includes people in Metropolitan Public Transport Zones 1 and 2 who used public transport in the last month. People who usually use public transport with any frequency but did not use public transport in the last month are not included.


A garden is a planned space, usually outdoors, set aside for the display, cultivation, and enjoyment of plants and other forms of nature. A garden can incorporate both natural and man-made materials. A garden does not refer to lawn and grass areas.

Grey water

Waste water from baths, showers, bathroom wash basins, clothes washing machines, sinks and laundry tubs. Grey water does not include household waste water which has been contaminated by toilet discharge.


A household is one or more persons, at least one of whom is 15 years and over, usually resident in the same private dwelling.

In most cases, all the occupants of a dwelling form a household. Analysis of Labour Force Survey data has shown the incidence of multiple household dwellings to be less than 1%.

Household size

The number of people in a household is equal to the number of children in the household, plus the number of adults in scope of the Labour Force Survey.

Household type

Households are classified solely on the basis of the usual residents of the household. 'Couple only', 'Couple with children' and 'Lone parent' households are one family households that contain no other related or unrelated usual residents. 'Couple with children' and 'Lone parent' households include usual residents of any age that are related as a child or children (whether natural, adopted, step or foster) of the couple or the lone parent.

Hot water system

A devise used for heating water for a dwelling. The energy source for heating is generally solar, gas or electricity although some houses use other sources (e.g. wood combustion).


Insulating materials placed in the walls, ceilings roof, floors or windows of a house to keep it warmer in winter and cooler in summer. Insulation comes in different forms, the most common being 'batts' in the ceiling. A dwelling is considered to have insulation even if partly insulated or the household have ordered insulation and are awaiting its installation.

Irrigation watering system

Any device or piping that renders watering the garden easier than a hand held hose or bucketing. This includes any watering system used in pot plants both in the garden and on patios/verandahs, sprinklers, drippers, soakers, and piping in the garden or pot plants.


Liquid Crystal Display is display technology that uses rod-shaped molecules (liquid crystals) that flow like liquid and bend light.


LED (Light Emitting Diode) is a semiconductor light source that emits visible light or invisible infra-red radiation.


LPG (Liquefied petroleum gas) (also called LP Gas, or autogas) is the generic name for mixtures of hydrocarbon (mainly propane and butane). It is used as a fuel in heating appliances and vehicles, and increasingly replacing chlorofluorocarbons as an aerosol propellant and a refrigerant to reduce damage to the ozone layer.

Mains gas

Gas connected to the household by underground pipes and provided on a continuous basis by an energy company.

Mains water/town water

Water supplied to a user often through a non-natural network (piped, open channel or other carrier), and where an economic transaction has occurred for the exchange of water.

Metropolitan Public Transport Zones

Melbourne's public transport network is divided into two main Metropolitan Public Transport Zones. Zone 1 covers the city centre and most inner suburbs of Melbourne, while Zone 2 covers most of the outer suburbs.

Months of summer

December 2008, January and February 2009.


Photovoltaic (PV) is a technology that uses solar cells to convert sunlight directly into electricity. Photovoltaic systems are different to solar hot water systems, which absorb sunlight as heat directly into the water-carrying tubes contained in the pane.

Plasma television

Flat panel display technology that ignites small pockets of gas to light phosphors.

Plumbed into the dwelling

This implies that the rain water tank is connected to an internal tap, washing machine or toilet via piping.


A device that projects images onto a screen.

Public transport

Any passenger transport service, excluding taxi services, that is organised and provided by any company or cooperative 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 or schools.

Self-extracted water

Water extracted directly from the environment for use (including rivers, lakes, groundwater and other water bodies). Some of this water is then distributed via a water provider to others.

Semi-detached dwellings

Dwellings which are joined to another dwelling at the roofline (and therefore have a common-party wall with another dwelling) or are separated from other dwellings by less than one-half (1/2) of a metre. Includes row or terrace houses or townhouses.

Separate House

Dwellings that are separated from other dwellings by at least one-half (1/2) of a metre. They can be joined by fences, carports or garages. This includes transportable homes.

Solar hot water system

Includes solar hot water systems that have boosters to heat water during periods of rain or overcast conditions, and when heavy demand exhausts the hot water supply before it can be reheated by the sun.

Swimming pool

Household swimming pool excluding communal pools and community pools.

Used Public Transport in the last month

Includes people in Melbourne Metropolitan Public Transport Zones 1 and 2 who used public transport in the last month. Frequency of public transport use and main reason for using public transport includes only those people who used public transport in the last month. Main reason for not using public transport includes only those people who did not use public transport in the last month.

White goods

Includes fridges, washing machines, clothes dryers, dishwashers.