Poll Shows Albertans Support Development Of More Wind Energy

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Almost 80% of Albertans say the government of Alberta has not done enough to develop wind power and other renewable forms of large-scale electricity generation, according to a recent survey.

Nanos Research performed the public opinion poll on behalf of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA). Nanos Research examined the views of Albertans on a wide range of electricity issues, focusing on the largest sources of electricity generation currently operating in Alberta. Currently, Alberta ranks third in Canada for installed wind capacity, with more than 1.1 GW.

According to the survey, Albertans give wind energy the highest "very favorable" rating, receiving 35% of the vote, followed by hydroelectricity (34.3%). However, natural gas was considered the most overall favorable resource (a mix of "very" and "somewhat" favorable), receiving 78.2% of the vote, with wind energy receiving 70.5%.

Furthermore, the study says 91.4% of respondents agree or somewhat agree that renewable sources like wind are an important part of Alberta's energy future, and 83.8% agree or somewhat agree that the Alberta government should provide financial support for developing renewable energy.

CanWEA says that if Alberta Premier Jim Prentice "is committed to achieving cost-effective, long-term greenhouse-gas emission reductions in the electricity sector as part of addressing climate change, wind energy will need to play a primary and growing role in Alberta's electricity system."

"The good news," the association adds, "is that new opinion polling data shows Albertans are firmly behind him in doing so."

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