Poll shows growing dissatisfaction from public on government’s LNG file

An Insights West poll shows perception on government's handling of LNG file is dimming.

Polling firm Insights West has released the results of a year-end poll which they conducted together with Business in Vancouver and the results show the public’s perception of the provincial government’s push for liquefied natural gas development has become “more negative.”

When it comes to energy, pipelines and LNG, 30 per cent of respondents say Premier Christy Clark and her government are doing a good job on the file, while 58 per cent say bad. Thirteen per cent were not sure. Insights West gave a B letter grade for that category. The highest marks went to the government’s handling of crime and public safety which saw 35 per cent saying the Premier’s done a good job and 46 per cent saying bad. It too received a B grade.

Housing and poverty issues was the least favoured, earning a D grade by the firm.

Insights West says a decline in perception for the LNG push has happened over the past two years. In December of 2013 just 35 per cent thought the government’s handling of LNG specifically was bad.

The Premier herself has seen a drop in favourable perception of her, with the poll showing half of British Columbians saying their per ception of her has worsened over the past six months. Her “net momentum” score is -46 for the poll. NDP leader John Horgan’s is +2.

The results of this poll are based on an online study conducted between November 9 and November 14 among 812 adults.

The consistency of public opinion is relatively stable in the three geographic zones of the poll, which is Metro Vancouver, Vancouver Island and ‘Rest of BC’.

A combined 33 per cent of people in ‘Rest of BC’ say the government is doing a good or very good job pushing for LNG.

Forty-two per cent in that same geographic category say the government is doing a bad or very bad job.

Northern Gateway Pipeline also made the poll in a question similar to LNG, asking if the government is doing a good job dealing with that project.

The Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman said in a statement to the Northern Sentinel that the industry is moving ahead.

“Today there are 21 LNG proposals in B.C. at various stages of development. Over 30 investment partners are involved. One major proposal – Pacific NorthWest LNG – has made a preliminary final investment decision,” he wrote. “A total of 13 LNG proposals have export approval from Canada’s National Energy Board. Another five applications are currently under consideration.”