Population tops 20m

Courtesy SMH Online
By David Higgins
June 3, 2005

Australia's population now tops 20 million.

It reached 20,229,800 in the final months of 2004, the bureau of statistics reported today, growing by 232,000 in 2004, or 1.2 per cent.

Around 52 per cent of the growth was down to births and 48 per cent to immigrants.

Queensland was the fastest growing state, adding 75,100 residents in 2004 (a 2 per cent growth rate).

NSW added 49,600 people (0.7 per cent growth) and Victoria 60,900 (1.2 per cent).

The ACT had the lowest growth rate, attracting just 1200 new residents (0.4 per cent).


Now & Then
      Courtesy of Sunday Life Magazine, Sun-Herald

Now:    The amount Australians spend annually on fast food is $8.9 billion
Then:   In 1993, it was more than $5 billion

Now:    The number of people who go whale watching in Australia is 1,618,027
In 1991, it was 335,200

Now:    The proportion of all mothers giving birth via caesarean in Australia is 27%
In 1991, it was 18%

Now:    The percentage of Australian males who smoke is 26%
In 1945, it was 72%

Now:    The proportion of the Australian population born overseas in 2001 was 23%
In 1947, it was 10%

Now:    The percentage of households with access to the internet is 53%
In 1998, it was 16%

Now:    The amount we save of our disposable incomes is 3.8%
In 1984, it was 12.5%

Now:    The average number of eggs each Australian eats in a year is 137
In 1948, it was 255

Now:    The amount retailers estimate Australians spent in the lead-up to Christmas 2004 - $34 billion
The amount spent over Christmas 2003 - $31.4 billion

Now:    The number of Australians attending non-government schools is 32%
In 1982, it was 22%

Now:    The proportion of Australians who are concerned about environmental problems is 57%
In 1992, it was 75%

Now:    The number of motor vehicles to every 1000 Australian residents is 675
In 1976, it was 472

Now:    The proportion of marriages performed by civil celebrants is 55%
In 1982, it was 39%

Now:    The percentage of Australians aged 15 to 64 who have qualifications not gained at school is 51%
In 1994, it was 39%

Now:    The proportion of babies born to unmarried parents is 31.3%
In 1961, it was 5.1%

Now:    The average floor area of a new house is 227.6 square metres
In 1984-85, it was 162.2 square metres

Now:    The average household credit-card debt is $5162
In 1996, it was $1601

Now:    The average number of fragrances women use is 5 to 6
In 1994, it was 2 to 3

Now:    The average number of people per household is 2.6
In 1911, it was 4.5

Now:    In 2001, the number of women who gave birth to twins was 4062
In 1980, it was 2219

Now:    The amount Australians spend on caffe lattes is $225 million
In 2001, it was about $112 million

Now:    The number of overseas short-term visitor arrivals in Australia is 4.7 million
In 1975, it was 281,000

Now:    The number of new caravans registered in Australia in 2003 was 15,800
In 1990, it was 4342


* Median age of Australia's population:  35 years.

* Number of registered births in Australia in 2001:  246,400;  in 2000:  249,600.

* Estimated number of lawnmowers sold in Australia each year: between 200,000 and 300,000.

* Number of schools in Australia in 2001: 9596;  proportion that are government schools:  75% 

* Prison rate per 100,000 people in the USA: 688; Australia: 151; the UK: 139; Korea: 133; Germany: 96; France: 85; Pakistan: 51

* Fertility rate in Australia in 2001:  1.73 babies per woman;  rate required for a woman to replace herself and her partner:  2.1

* The Box Jellyfish is regarded by many as the world's most deadly creature.

* The Taipan snake carries enough venom to kill 12,000 guinea pigs.

* There are 4800 taxis in Sydney.  With a population of 4.2 million, that's one taxi for every 875 people.

* Sydney's total prison population today is 8500.

* Median house price in Australia in mid 2003 was $292,000.

* Number of hectares of land in Australia used for agriculture purposes is 447 million.

* Number of respondents who called themselves a 'fitness instructor' in the 2001 Australian Census:
   12,364;  in the 1996 Census:  7669

* Proportion of couples in Australia who divorce during the first five years of marriage: 17%;
   during the following five-year period: 26%

* Number of sheep and lambs in Australia (the lowest level since 1948):  106 million.

* Proportion of males aged over 14 in Australia who consume alcohol at least once a week:
   57%;  of females:  39%

* Proportion of women in Australia aged over 60 affected by osteoporosis:  1 in 2;  of men:
   1 in 3;  annual cost to the community:  $1.9 billion.

* The median age of people living in Sydney, Perth and Brisbane is the same (34 years).  The 
   youngest state capitals are Darwin and Canberra (32 years) and the oldest is Adelaide (37 years).

* Sydneysiders who weren't born in Australia are most likely to have been born in the UK, China or
   New Zealand (in descending order).

* 47 per cent of Australia's international visitors arrive in Sydney.

* In July, Sydney usually has about 10.3 rainy days, 11.8 clear days and 8.6 cloudy days

* Australia's busiest retail strip is Pitt Street Mall, which boasts a passing trade of 14,500
   pedestrians per hour during peak periods.

* Average weekly earnings in Australia for full-time male employees in August 2002: $921; for
   females: $760

* Population increase in Melbourne in the 12 months to June 2002: 52,500; in Sydney: 42,700

* Total distance travelled each year by motor vehicles in Australia: 190 billion kilometres;
   proportion that are passenger vehicles: 76 per cent

* Increase in bust size of Australian women in the past 70 years: 5.3 centimetres;
   most common size: 14C

* Life expectancy for males born in Australia during 1999-2001: 77 years: for females: 82.4 years

* Number of household internet subscribers in Australia at the beginning of 2003: 3.9 million;
   proportion of these in capital cities: 78 per cent

* Top 10 surnames for the 2003/04 Sydney White Pages directory: Smith, 7960; Lee, 4843;
   Jones, 4118; Nguyen, 4077; Williams, 3968; Brown, 3935; Wilson, 3368; Taylor, 3232;
   Johnson, 2532; Wong, 2465

* March is usually the wettest month of the year in Sydney while September is the driest,
   according to the Bureau of Meteorology.

* Sydney ranked equal fifth in a recent survey of quality of life in 215 world cities, conducted by
   Mercer Human Resource Consulting. 

* 37.8 per cent of people in Sydney were born overseas.

* Number of exporters in Australia: 31,450; value of goods and services sent to offshore customers
   in 2001/02: A$152 billion

* Proportion of Australia covered by agriculture: 60 per cent; number of hectares of forest and
   woodland that have been cleared since European settlement: 100 million

* Current population of NSW: 6,532,000; projected population in 2051: 8,248,000; current
   population of Victoria: 4,829,000; projected population in 2051: 5,547,000

* In 2001, there were 61,947 more women than men in Sydney.

* Sydney has 176 McDonald's outlets - 64 per cent of the total in NSW.

* Chinese is spoken at home by 4.9 per cent of Sydney residents.

* Proportion of the population who say they are proud to be Australian: 93 per cent


Sources include Good Weekend Magazine and The (Sydney) Magazine 2003