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75% Say Carbon-Free Transition Helps Canada Over Long Term

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Three-quarters of Canadians see the shift to less carbon-intensive energy as a necessary transition that will help the country over the long term, even if it raises the cost of living, according to a new Abacus Data survey conducted for Vancouver-based Clean Energy Canada.

“In the online survey of 1,848 Canadian adults, conducted between December 12 and 19, 2019, 75% of respondents said the conversation about an energy transition is a global one, not isolated to Canada,” iPolitics reports [1]. “The exact same percentage of respondents said this energy transition would be beneficial for Canada in the long term, while 70% also said it was necessary, whether it’s preferable or not.”

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“A lot of the political conversation about an energy transition has involved the suggestion that an energy transition is anti-Alberta, or something happening only in Canada, or a thing that could be stopped by a more pro-oil federal government,” said Abacus Chair Bruce Anderson. “But Canadians and most Albertans don’t see it that way. They believe whatever disruption a transition will cause is necessary and inevitable, and they want governments to work together on a plan to adapt our economy, not debate whether we need to or not.”

“Climate change is here, and the clean energy transition is happening with or without us,” added Clean Energy Canada Executive Director Merran Smith. “The majority of Albertans realize this too, and half of them believe it will actually benefit Alberta. A sustainable future for ourselves, our kids, and our economy—that’s something Canadians can agree on. We’re not as divided as some would have us believe.”

Among survey respondents, iPolitics writes:

• 61% said the transition would help Alberta.

• 59% said it would make life more expensive.

• 59% said it should be sped up.

• 22% said the energy transition was meant to punish Alberta workers, while 78% said it was about fighting climate change.

• 74% of Albertans said the transition would make life more expensive, with 58% saying it’s necessary.

• 54% said the shift would benefit Canada in the long term, and 49% said it would help Alberta.

• 71% nationally and 63% in Alberta said the transition is certain or likely to happen.