Canadians Divided on Oilsands

Syncrude Oil Operations in Alberta Tar Sands

CBJ – A new survey finds that Canadians are almost split down the middle on the topic of developing Alberta’s oil sands.

The share of Canadians who say they view development of oil sands reserves favourably was 45.1%, versus 48% who see it as unfavourable, according to a Nanos Research poll of 1,000 Canadians. Thirty-five percent of respondents reported having a worse impression of the oilsands than five years previously, with 19% reporting having impressions that improved.

Canada’s energy industry has struggled to win broad public support for infrastructure projects it says are required to move oil to new markets. The public resistance is partly due to mounting criticism that environmental costs are too high, concerns which have stalled pipeline projects such as TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone XL.

Production of bitumen is forecast to more than double by 2030, according to the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers. The federal environment department has identified bitumen production as Canada’s fastest-growing source of carbon emissions.


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