Most British Columbians agree with Trans Mountain pipeline approval: poll
Pipe for the Trans Mountain pipeline is unloaded in Edson, Alta. on Tuesday June 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS / Jason Franson
A new poll suggests a majority of British Columbians agree with the federal government's re-approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
An online survey conducted by Research Co. found 56 per cent of respondents approved of Ottawa's second attempt at moving forward with the controversial energy project, which it announced on June 18.
A third of British Columbians who participated in the poll disagreed with the decision, while 11 per cent were undecided at the time of the survey.
Agreement was highest among men and those ages 55 and older, as well as those in the Southern Interior and BC Liberal voters in general.
Despite majority approval of the project, nearly 60 per cent of British Columbians were unhappy with the federal government's overall handling of the Trans Mountain file, the poll suggests.
“As expected, dissatisfaction with the way Ottawa handled this issue is practically universal among strong opponents (95 per cent) and moderate opponents (73 per cent) of the project,” Research Co. president and CEO Mario Canseco said in a statement.
“But 50 per cent of British Columbians who moderately or strongly support the expansion are also unhappy with the federal government.”
More than seven-in-10 British Columbians who took the survey believed the pipeline expansion will create hundreds of local jobs, and 39 per cent thought the twinning will lower gas prices in the Lower Mainland.
When it came to the health and environmental concerns associated with the project, 46 per cent agreed that the expansion threatens the health and safety of British Columbians, while 44 per cent disagreed with the statement.
Research Co. surveyed 800 adult British Columbians online between June 22 and June 26. The data carries a margin of error of 3.5 per cent, 19 times out of 20.