NATIONAL PULSE – Pipelines, Paris and cross-border politics: US energy policies leave Canadians divided over how to respond

With Alberta Premier Rachel Notley in Houston this week for North America’s largest energy industry conference, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau slated to join her, a new public opinion poll from the Angus Reid Institute released today (Thursday, March 9, 2017) finds Canadians largely supportive of renewed efforts to build the Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Most want Canada to maintain its climate commitments, even if U.S. pulls out of Paris Agreement

However, this study – the second installment of a three-part examination of the Canada-U.S. relationship in the Trump era – finds Canadians much less supportive of U.S. President Donald Trump’s stated intention to withdraw his country from the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

Two-thirds of Canadians say they want their own country to carry on with its current commitment to Paris, even if the U.S. withdraws. This belief is considerably weaker in Notley’s Alberta, which is also the region that voices strongest support for building Keystone.

Key Findings:

• Half (48%) of Canadians say they support the Keystone XL pipeline while one-third (33%) oppose. Support reaches three-quarters (77%) in Alberta and drops to 36 per cent in Quebec.

• Canadians say the prospect of the U.S. leaving the Paris Accord is a “very bad idea” three-to-one over those who say it would be good (45% versus 16%). Overall, 67 per cent say it would be either a bad or very bad decision.

• Two-thirds (67%) say Canada should continue with its current commitment to the Paris Accord, even if the U.S. reneges.

— Angus Reid Institute

About Mel Rothenburger (5787 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on NATIONAL PULSE – Pipelines, Paris and cross-border politics: US energy policies leave Canadians divided over how to respond

  1. This says, essentially, two important things…:

    1) Canadians are self-interested and want what they want, so long as it benefits themselves directly. Alberta is clearly more likely to benefit from the pipeline and surprise, surprise, that’s where the highest level of support is found. The impacts on their children, grandchildren and the world in general don’t enter into their considerations.

    2) Canadians don’t have a clue what the Paris Accord is and clearly don’t understand how the pipeline impacts our ability to meet our obligations.

    In short, the poll confirms that Canadians what to have their cake and eat it too. Big surprise…

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