CSIRO: economy does not need to sacrifice for environment

AUSTRALIA does not have to sacrifice the economy for the environment, a major CSIRO study has found.

The paper, published on Thursday in the journal Nature, showed the nation could make "great progress to sustainability without any changes in social values".

The study charted 20 different options for economic growth and environmental impacts, and how the impacts could be minimised.

It said consumers could help by choosing more sustainably - driving cars less or green housing options.

But "collective action" through national policy would have up to 90% of the impact on how sustainable the economy could be.

Environmentally-friendly policies, such as funding public transport instead of motorways, accounted for 83% of the difference in the carbon emissions to 2050.

"We find decisions we make as a society are likely to shape Australia's future sustainability more than decisions we make as a household or business," Steve Hatfield-Dodds wrote in The Conversation.

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