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MOST CANADIANS WANT OFFSHORE DRILLING SUSPENDED OR STOPPED – May 20, 2010

ANTI-DRILLING SENTIMENT LESS STRONG IN ALBERTA AND THE ATLANTIC REGION

[Ottawa – May 20, 2010] – In light of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, most Canadians want offshore drilling here in Canada to be suspended until the government can review the risks, or stopped altogether.

Respondents to an EKOS poll commissioned by the CBC program Power and Politics were asked to choose from four options: permanently stopping offshore drilling, suspending it pending a safety review, continuing it pending a safety review, or carrying on as normal.

Fewer than one-in-ten Canadians felt that offshore drilling should continue as normal in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico spill, though the number was higher in Alberta.

The most common response was that offshore drilling should be suspended for the moment. The second most common response was that it should continue until a safety review is completed.

In British Columbia nearly one-in-five respondents wanted permanent cessation of offshore drilling, which may reflect the particular concern that people there have for their coastline. But in Alberta, Canada’s biggest oil producer, most people did not want a halt to offshore drilling, at least for now. The results from the Atlantic provinces were similar.

Interestingly, older Canadians and women tended to be more concerned than others about the dangers of offshore drilling.

There were also sharp partisan divides, with Conservative supporters much less inclined to suspend or stop drilling and NDP, BQ and Green supporters much more likely. Liberal supporters fitted in between at about the national average.

Click here for the full report: full_report_may_20

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