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Poll: British Columbians prefer the province invest in clean energy over LNG

VANCOUVER — Most British Columbians would like to see the provincial government invest in clean energy rather than LNG as it begins its new term, while a strong majority think the province should prioritize combating climate change, according to a new survey from Stratcom and Clean Energy Canada.

When it comes to government spending, most British Columbians (61%) would like to see the government focus more on developing renewables such as hydroelectricity, hydrogen and clean technology, while fewer than one-quarter (22%) prefer a focus on LNG.

An even stronger majority (79%) say the government should include emissions requirements for all future LNG developments in line with its climate plan and 2030 pollution target—even if this makes them costlier and potentially less likely to happen. Only 9% disagree.

Overall, a majority (61%) think that combating climate change should be a priority for the government. Almost one in five British Columbians (18%) think that combating climate change should be the government’s top priority, while 43% believe it should be among the top priorities. Only 11% think it should be considered less of a priority and that the government should deal with other issues first.

Meanwhile, almost three-quarters (73%) support policies that make pollution-intensive products and activities gradually more expensive, if at the same time these policies also make climate-friendly alternatives cheaper and more available.This view is held across partisan lines, with 79% of NDP voters, 66% of Liberal voters, 86% of Green voters and 66% of undecided voters in support. Overall, fewer than one in five British Columbians (17%) oppose the idea.

QUOTES 

“B.C. has a proud history of climate action, and it’s clear that British Columbians want to see the province build on that progress. Critically, they want a sustainable economy that’s built on a resilient clean energy foundation, not on fossil fuels. They understand that this is how we keep our province safer, healthier and globally competitive in the new decade.”

—Merran Smith, Executive Director, Clean Energy Canada

METHODOLOGY 

The survey was conducted online with 856 British Columbian adults from November 23 to December 1, 2020. Respondents were statistically weighted to match the gender, age, region and proportion of Chinese mother tongue in B.C. as per the 2016 Census. Online polls don’t report margin of error, but a similar sized probability sample would have a margin of error of +/- 3.5%, 19 times out of 20. Totals may not add up to 100 due to rounding.

Strategic Communications Inc. (Stratcom) is an award-winning consulting firm that has been designing and implementing strategic research since 1991 for not-for-profit organizations, charities, unions, professional associations, regulatory agencies, governments and government agencies. Stratcom has conducted quantitative and qualitative research in every province in Canada and in the U.K., the U.S., Australia, India, Brazil and Western Europe, in many languages. The company’s research has been noted in the Toronto Star, the Vancouver Sun, the Globe and Mail and Maclean’s.