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FACTBOX-Polls on where Americans stand on top 5 energy issues facing Washington

Source: Reuters - Thu, 19 Dec 2013 05:04 PM
Author: Reuters
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NEW YORK, Dec 19 (Reuters) - In the coming year, several energy issues deemed important by public opinion polls will be in the spotlight in Washington.

The list includes: the fate of the Keystone XL pipeline, exports of U.S. oil, hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," decreasing ethanol requirements in gasoline, and climate change.

Below is a list of public opinion polls taken on those issues in 2013:

KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE

The Obama administration has yet to rule on the pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

POLL DATE: Sept. 26

CONDUCTED BY: Pew Research Center for People and the Press

KEY QUESTION: Do you favor or oppose building the Keystone XL pipeline that would transport oil from Canada's oil sands region through the Midwest to refineries in Texas?

RESULT: 65 percent favor, 30 percent oppose

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,506/ 2.9 percent LINK: http://www.people-press.org/2013/09/26/continued-support-for-keystone-xl-pipeline/

POLL DATE: Dec. 12

CONDUCTED BY: Bloomberg

KEY QUESTION: There is a proposal to build the Keystone XL pipeline across the nation's midsection to carry Canadian crude oil to refineries on the Gulf Coat. Which of the following better describes your view of Keystone?

RESULT: It is an opportunity to improve U.S. energy security: 56 percent. It is a potential threat to the environment from oil spills or greenhouse gas emissions: 35 percent.

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,004/ 3.1 percent LINK: http://www.bloomberg.com/infographics/2013-12-11/bloomberg-national-poll-december-2013.html

POLL DATE: Dec. 12

CONDUCTED BY: American Petroleum Institute, polling sourced to Harris Interactive

KEY QUESTION: A pipeline - the Keystone XL pipeline - has been proposed to help bring more oil from Canada, North Dakota and neighboring states to American refineries for processing into gasoline, diesel fuel and other products. Do you support or oppose the building of the Keystone XL pipeline?

RESULT: 69 percent support, 17 percent oppose.

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: More than 1,025/ 3 percent

LINK: http://www.api.org/news-and-media/news/newsitems/2013/dec-2013/democrats-independents-republicans-believe-infrastructure-enhances-us-energy-security-jobs

OIL AND GAS EXPORTS

U.S. oil production has hit the highest level in 25 years on the back of the shale boom, threatening to overtake the U.S. refining sector's ability to refine it all in the coming years and putting the oil sector under pressure to seek a lifting of the ban on crude exports. Natural gas producers are also seeking to export more gas.

POLL DATE: Oct. 28-Nov. 11

CONDUCTED BY: Thomson Reuters

KEY QUESTION: U.S. oil producers should be allowed to export crude oil produced in the United States overseas to other countries.

RESULT: 41.4 percent agree, 38.4 percent disagree.

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,514/ 2.9 percent

LINK:

POLL DATE: Sept. 5

CONDUCTED BY: The University of Texas at Austin Energy Poll

KEY QUESTION: To what extent do you agree or disagree with the statement? The U.S. should export natural gas to other countries.

RESULT: 30 percent disagree, 34 percent agree

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 2,144/ 3.1 percent

LINK: http://www.utenergypoll.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/UT-Energy-Poll-Topline-Fall-2013.pdf

FRACKING

Hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," has led to a boom in U.S. natural gas and oil production. Protesters and politicians on a local level have blocked companies from fracking in some areas, citing risks to land and drinking water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is due to release a study on the technology and its risks in 2014, but so far no federal regulations have passed that would limit or promote fracking.

POLL DATE: Sept. 5

CONDUCTED BY: The University of Texas at Austin Energy Poll

KEY QUESTION: Based on what you know or have heard, please indicate the degree to which you support or oppose the use of hydraulic fracturing in the extraction of fossil fuels.

RESULT: 38 percent oppose, 38 percent support

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 2,144/ 3.1 percent

LINK: http://www.utenergypoll.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/UT-Energy-Poll-Topline-Fall-2013.pdf

POLL DATE: Sept. 26

CONDUCTED BY: Pew Research Center for the People and the Press

KEY QUESTION: Do you favor or oppose the increased use of fracking?

RESULT: 44 percent favor, 49 percent oppose

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,506/ 2.9 percent

LINK: http://www.people-press.org/2013/09/26/continued-support-for-keystone-xl-pipeline/

ETHANOL GASOLINE REQUIREMENTS

In November, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed reducing the amount of ethanol required to be mixed into gasoline. The Senate is considering a similar proposal. The requirement, known as the renewable fuel standard, was enacted in 2005 to increase the amount renewable fuels used by cars, but has since come under scrutiny for raising the price at the pump and demand on corn used to produced ethanol.

POLL DATE: Sept. 23

CONDUCTED BY: American Petroleum Institute, polling sourced to Harris Interactive

KEY QUESTION: Do you agree or disagree that blending corn-based ethanol into gasoline could increase costs for consumers?

RESULT: 50 percent agree, 28 percent disagree.

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,034/ 3 percent

LINK: http://www.api.org/news-and-media/news/newsitems/2013/oct-2013/~/media/Files/News/2013/13-October/What-America-Is-Thinking-RFS-US-Fall-2013.pdf

POLL DATE: Feb. 6

CONDUCTED BY: Renewable Fuels Association

KEY QUESTION: Do you favor or oppose this requirement?

RESULT: 64 percent favor, 25 percent oppose

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,000/ 3.1 percent

LINK: http://www.ethanolrfa.org/news/entry/new-poll-shows-strong-support-for-renewable-fuels-agenda/

CLIMATE CHANGE

Enacting laws to offset carbon emissions and address climate change may be on the agenda, but do not always make the top of the priority list among other issues, such as economic growth.

POLL DATE: Jan. 24

CONDUCTED BY: Pew Research Center for People and the Press

KEY QUESTION: Is dealing with global warming a top priority for the president and Congress this year?

RESULT: 28 percent said yes, down 2 percent from 2009

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,502/ 2.9 percent

LINK: http://www.people-press.org/files/legacy-pdf/01-24-13%20Prioritie%20Release.pdf

POLL DATE: April 8

CONDUCTED BY: Gallup

KEY QUESTION: How much do you personally worry about global warming?

RESULT: 33 percent worry "a great deal," 25 percent worry "a fair amount," 20 percent worry "only a little," and 23 percent worry "not at all."

PARTICIPANTS/ERROR MARGIN: 1,022/ 4 percent

LINK: http://www.gallup.com/poll/161645/americans-concerns-global-warming-rise.aspx (Compiled by Julia Edwards; Editing by Grant McCool)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of the Thomson Reuters Foundation. For more information see our Acceptable Use Policy.

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