Poll: British Columbians ready to shift away from fossil fuelsSeven in ten see economic opportunity in developing cleaner sources of energy

April 24, 2014

VANCOUVER — New polling research reveals that British Columbians want the province to produce, use and export fewer fossil fuels and embrace cleaner sources of energy instead.

The poll found more than three quarters of British Columbians (78%) agree that B.C. should transition away from using fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy to prevent climate change from getting worse. More than two thirds (67%) agree the province should decrease its reliance on fossil fuel exports to avoid future boom and bust economic cycles.

Another three quarters (74%) agree that the province has a good opportunity to create jobs and grow the economy by developing the solutions needed to transition away from fossil fuels.

“As climate science continues to demonstrate, climate change could have devastating impacts on both the environment and the economy,” said Kevin Sauve, spokesperson for the Pembina Institute in B.C. “It’s encouraging to see that British Columbians are on the same page. Not only do they understand the need to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels but see economic benefits in developing cleaner sources of energy as well.”

“British Columbia is largely sitting on the sidelines of a global clean energy bonanza,” said Merran Smith, Director of Clean Energy Canada. “Citizens know that the world’s energy system is changing. The provincial government needs to strengthen the province’s clean energy economy through targeted policy today.”

“This poll sends a clear message that British Columbians want steps put in place now to transition this province towards a prosperous low-carbon future,” said Tom Pedersen, Executive Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (PICS). “It is encouraging to see such strong support for change across all levels of society, but especially among tomorrow’s leaders — 18-34 year olds.” 

The Pembina Institute, Clean Energy Canada and PICS commissioned Strategic Communications Inc. to conduct this poll. The results are from an online survey that was fielded April 1st to April 2nd 2014, conducted among 802 adult British Columbia residents using an established proprietary research panel. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and region Census data to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of British Columbia. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. 


For the complete results of the polling analysis, see: https://www.pembina.org/pub/2539


For more information about the polling results:

Kevin Sauve, Pembina Institute
o: 604-874-8558 x:231 | c: 604-354-2628

James Glave, Clean Energy Canada
o: 604-947-2200 | c: 604-833-4368

Robyn Meyer, Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions
o: 250-853-3626 | c: 250-588-4053

For more information about the polling methodology:

John Willis, Strategic Communications Inc.
o: 604-681-3030 x:70 | c: 416-319-0052


The Pembina Institute is a national non-partisan think tank that advances clean energy solutions through research, education, consulting and advocacy. The Institute has offices in Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton, Yellowknife and Vancouver and has spent close to three decades working to reduce the environmental impacts of Canada’s energy production and use.

Clean Energy Canada works to accelerate Canada’s transition to a clean and renewable energy system. We build awareness of and support for solutions that address climate disruption and foster an energy efficient, environmentally responsible and prosperous economy. We do so in collaboration with civil society, governments and the private sector.

The Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (PICS) brings together leading researchers from British Columbia and around the world to study the impacts of climate change and to develop innovative solutions towards transitioning to a vibrant, low-carbon economy. Hosted and led by the University of Victoria in collaboration with BC’s three other research-intensive universities – Simon Fraser University, the University of British Columbia and the University of Northern British Columbia – PICS pulls together the intellectual capital of the province while working in partnership with all levels of government, the private and the non-profit sector.

Strategic Communications Inc. (Stratcom) is a full service opinion research and communications firm with offices in Toronto, Vancouver, Ottawa and London UK. We have been providing strategic, political and public affairs polling and focus groups since 1991. Stratcom has been the official pollster to 24 Hours newspaper in Vancouver, and its research has been recognized in the Wall Street Journal, Maclean's Magazine, the Globe and Mail and other national and regional publications.


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