Views on Canadian Oil and Gas

Two-Thirds (65%) Think It is Possible to Increase Oil and Gas Production While Respecting Environment

TORONTO, May 3, 2012 /CNW/ - A new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce shows a majority of Canadians believe it is possible to respect the environment while increasing oil and gas production. Two-thirds (65%) of Canadians agree that "it is possible to increase oil and gas production while protecting the environment at the same time," including one-quarter (26%) who 'agree strongly'. One-quarter (25%) of Canadians disagree with this idea (9% 'disagree strongly').

  • Agreement is higher among Albertans (80%) and Saskatchewan/Manitoba residents (73%). It is lower among Quebec residents (55%). Agreement in other regions is 70% in British Columbia, 68% in Atlantic Canada and 64% in Ontario.
  • Agreement is also higher among older Canadians (80% among 55+ vs. 64% among 35-54 years, 49% among 18-34 years) and men (70% vs. 60% among women).

When it comes to a more specific project, Canadians say that the development of the oil sands is more positive than negative. Nearly twice as many Canadians agree (57%, including 21% who 'agree strongly') as disagree (29%, including 12% who 'disagree strongly') with the statement that 'I think that overall the benefits of development of the oil sands in Canada outweigh the negatives."

  • Agreement is higher among Albertans (80%), Saskatchewan/Manitoba residents (68%) and British Columbians (63%). It is lower among Quebec residents (37%). Agreement in other regions is 61% in Atlantic Canada and 60% in Ontario.
  • Agreement is also higher among older Canadians (69% among 55+ vs. 59% among 35-54 years, 42% among 18-34 years) and men (65% vs. 51% among women).

Canadians prefer that domestic refineries use Canadian oil ahead of imported oil even if it means shipping the oil across the country to be refined. Eight-in-ten (80%, including 48% who 'agree strongly') residents agree with the statement that 'Canadian oil refineries should make it a priority to use Canadian oil before using oil imported from other countries, even if it means transporting oil from Western Canada across the country to the refineries" (10% disagree, including 2% who 'disagree strongly').

  • Agreement is higher among Albertans (88%), Saskatchewan/Manitoba residents (87%) and Atlantic Canadians (86%). Agreement in other regions is 80% in Ontario, 79% in British Columbia and 75% in Quebec.
  • Agreement is also higher among older Canadians (88% among 55+ vs. 82% among 35-54 years, 68% among 18-34 years).

Canadians also think it is important to diversify the export markets for Canadian oil and gas away from the United States. Three-quarters (75%, including 35% who 'agree strongly') of residents agree with the statement that 'it is important that Canada does what it takes to access new markets for oil and gas exports in order to reduce the reliance on exports to the United States" (15% disagree, including 4% who 'disagree strongly').

  • Agreement is higher among Albertans (86%) and lower among Quebecers (67%). Agreement in other regions is 80% in Saskatchewan/Manitoba, 78% in Atlantic Canada and 75% in both Ontario and British Columbia,
  • Agreement is also higher among older Canadians (80% among 55+ vs. 78% among 35-54 years, 64% among 18-34 years).

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. The poll of 2,008 adult Canadians was conducted online using Ipsos Reid's national online household panel between April 23 and 26, 2012. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±2.2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error would be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to 2006 Census data.

For full tabular results, please visit our website at www.ipsos.ca
News releases are available at http://www.ipsos-na.com/news/


For further information:

John Wright
Senior Vice President
Ipsos Reid Public Affairs
416-324-2002

Or 

Emilie Potvin
Director, Public Affairs 
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce
613-238-4000 (231)