Source: The Mercury, 15 January, 1997, p.5
BY KATE HANNON in Canberra AS the age of Australians continues to rise, Tasmania is leading the way with one of the oldest populations in the nation. The median age now is 34 an increase of 5.6 years on the median age in 1976, according to figures released yesterday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. South Australians lead the nation in terms of age with a median of 35.5 years, followed by Tasmania at 34.6 years. The median age in other states is New South Wales 34.4 years, Victoria 34.2 Queensland 33.3, Western Australia 33.2, the ACT 30.9 and the Northern Territory 28.5 years. New statistics also show the number of children in Australia has not increased significantly in two decades. The number of children aged less than 15 grew by only 3% in the 20 years to June 1996 while the number of people over 65 grew by 76% during the same period. The bureau says declining mortality and increased life expectancy is continuing to have a major impact on older age groups. As a result, there now are 201,000 people over 85 in Australia compared with 85,000 in 1976. There are twice as many women as men in this age group. In 1996, the number of people aged over 85 increased by 11,000, or 6%, well above the national growth rate of 1.3% for the entire population. The number of people aged 65 and over increased by 2.4% in the 12 months. South Australia had the highest proportion of population aged 65 and over with, nearly 14%, followed by Tasmania with 12.7%, NSW 12.5%, Victoria 12.4%, Queensland 11.4%, WA 10.5%, ACT 7.2% and NT 3.3%. The increase in the number of people in this age group in Tasmania last year was below the national average of 2.4%. The state last year recorded a decline in the number of children aged up to 14 years against a national increase of 0.4%.
Where to next?
Student Questions for this article
Teacher Discussion of this article
Index - Related articles
Index - Data Reduction
Index - Number
Main Index - Numeracy in the News