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Poll: Midwestern, Michigan voters favor transition toward clean energy sources

Wind, solar are preferences
Feb 20, 2012
A majority of voters in four Midwestern states including Michigan overwhelmingly support clean energy and energy efficiency, according to a telephone poll of 1,600 voters in Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.

The poll, sponsored by the Minnesota Environmental Partnership (MEP), was conducted January 9-15. It was conducted by the national bipartisan polling team Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin & Metz and Public Opinion Strategies and has a 2.9 percent margin of error.

Throughout the region, voters expressed a clear preference for wind (86%) and solar power (87%) over natural gas, coal, and nuclear power for future energy sources. When asked what energy source they would like to see increased to meet their state’s future energy needs, voters overwhelmingly ranked wind and solar power as their top preferences.

They also prefer to reduce the need for fossil fuels like oil and coal by expanding the use of clean, renewable energy that can be generated in the U.S. rather than drilling and digging for more oil and coal in the U.S. In Michigan, 69 percent of voters polled agree that increasing the use of clean, renewable energy sources like wind and solar power will create new jobs.

 Democrats, Independents and Republicans across the board all see this job-creating potential and expressed a strong preference for candidates who will move their states to better energy policies as opposed to those who will focus on more traditional energy sources.

“These poll results offer important information for candidates in the 2012 election cycle about their constituents’ opinions on energy,” said Chris Kolb, president of the Michigan Environmental Council. “Voters want cleaner, safer energy options that create in-state jobs and build growing industries. They don’t want a continuation of the status quo.”
 POLL METHODOLOGY: “From January 9-15, 2012, the bipartisan research team of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates (FM3) and Public Opinion Strategies (POS) completed 1,600 telephone interviews with likely voters in the Midwest: 400 each in the states of Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. Data have been statistically weighted to reflect the true geographic distribution of voters across the region. The margin of sampling error for the combined four states is +/-2.9%; margins of error for subgroups within the sample will be larger. Comparisons to 2010 data used identical methodology. Survey was preceded by focus groups in December 2011 with swing voters in suburban communities of the Twin Cities; in Columbus, OH and in Brookfield, WI.
Hugh McDiarmid: 248-660-4300
Chris Kolb: 517-487-9539
RELATED TOPICS: clean energy, wind power
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