HPU/N&R Poll: North Carolinians See Both Positives and Negatives in Offshore Drilling

High Point, NC, Feb. 14, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —

The first High Point University Poll of 2018 finds that a majority (53 percent) of North Carolinians oppose opening waters off North Carolina’s coast to drilling. The North Carolina public also has a variety of views on the costs and benefits of such a policy.

 

When asked about the possible results of allowing such offshore drilling, these same North Carolina residents saw some benefits and some risks. Substantial majorities say oil and gas development would result in increased risks to the ocean and coastal environment (75 percent), economic benefits (68 percent), increased threats to North Carolina’s coastal economy (65 percent), reduced American reliance on imported oil and gas (62 percent), and increased American energy security (56 percent). 

 

There is less consensus among North Carolina residents about whether the drilling would delay the development of alternative or renewable energy sources (48 percent say yes) or lead to reduced energy costs (49 percent say yes). In fact, a majority (59 percent) of North Carolinians say that the development will not lead to higher energy costs.

 

When informed that the governor of Florida had succeeded in having his state removed from consideration for offshore oil and gas drilling, approximately two-thirds (66 percent) of North Carolina residents say that they think it is more likely that North Carolina could be excluded, as well.

 

“Public attitudes toward issues like energy exploration can be complex,” says Martin Kifer, director of the HPU Poll and associate professor of political science. “In this case, we have a majority of people who say they are not in favor of a policy, and the public also seems to see both risks and rewards that might result.”

 

All adults – Opposition to Oil and Gas Development (February 2018)

The Trump Administration recently has proposed opening waters off North Carolina’s coast to oil and gas drilling. Generally speaking, do you support or oppose this proposal?

Support – 37 percent

Oppose – 53 percent

Don’t know/refused – 11 percent

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed Feb. 5-11, 2018, n = 439 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.7 percent)

 

All adults – Results from Oil and Gas Drilling (February 2018)

Now I am going to read a list of results some people say will come from oil and gas development off the North Carolina coast. For each one, please tell me whether or not it is a likely result of oil and gas development off the North Carolina coast. (PRESENTED IN RANDOMIZED ORDER)

 

  Yes No (Don’t know/ Refuse)
Increased risks to the ocean and coastal environment 75 18 7
Economic benefits 68 23 9
Increased threats to North Carolina’s coastal economy, which relies on tourism and fishing 65 26 8
Reduced American reliance on imported oil and gas 62 29 9
Increased American energy security 56 31 14
Reduced energy costs 49 35 16
Delayed development of alternative or renewable energy sources 48 35 18
Increased energy costs 26 59 15

 

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed Feb. 5-11, 2018, n = 439 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.7 percent)

 

All adults – Chance of exclusion from the policy (February 2018)

The governor of Florida succeeded in having his state removed from consideration for offshore oil and gas drilling. Do you think this makes it more or less likely that North Carolina could also be excluded?

More likely – 66 percent

Less likely – 20 percent

(Don’t know/refuse) – 14 percent

 

(All adult (North Carolina resident) sample surveyed Feb. 5-11, 2018, n = 439 and margin of sampling error approximately = +/- 4.7 percent)

 

The most recent HPU Poll was fielded by live interviewers at the High Point University Survey Research Center calling on Feb. 5-11, 2018. The responses from a sample of all North Carolina counties came from 439 adults with landline or cellular telephones. The registered voter subsample relied on responses from the participants about their own registration status and yielded a total of 364 respondents. The Survey Research Center contracted with Survey Sampling International to acquire this sample. The survey has an estimated margin of sampling error of approximately 4.7 percentage points for all adult respondents and an approximate margin of sampling error of 5.1 percent for the self-described registered voters. The data is weighted toward population estimates for cellular and landline telephone use, age, gender, race, and education level based on U.S. Census numbers for North Carolina. In addition to sampling error, factors such as question wording and other methodological choices in conducting survey research can introduce additional error into the findings of opinion polls. Details from this survey are available at http://www.highpoint.edu/src/files/2018/02/56memoB.pdf.

Further results and methodological details from the most recent survey and past studies can be found at the Survey Research Center website at http://www.highpoint.edu/src/. The materials online include past press releases as well as memos summarizing the findings (including approval ratings) for each poll since 2010.

The HPU Poll reports methodological details in accordance with the standards set out by AAPOR’s Transparency Initiative, and the HPU Survey Research Center is a Charter Member of the Initiative. For more information, see http://transparency.aapor.org/index.php/transparency.

You can follow the HPU Poll on Twitter at https://twitter.com/HPUSurveyCenter.

 

Dr. Martin Kifer, chair and associate professor of political science, serves as the director of the HPU Poll, and Brian McDonald serves as the associate director of the HPU Poll.

 

At High Point University, every student receives an extraordinary education in an inspiring environment with caring people.® HPU, located in the Piedmont Triad region of North Carolina, is a liberal arts institution with more than 4,900 undergraduate and graduate students. It is ranked No. 1 by U.S. News and World Report for Best Regional Colleges in the South, No. 1 for Most Innovative Regional Colleges in the South and No. 1 for Best Undergraduate Teaching in the South. The Princeton Review named HPU in the 2018 edition of “The Best 382 Colleges” in the nation, as well as Best Career Services (No. 19), Best-Run Colleges (No. 20), Best College Dorm Rooms (No. 7), a Great School for Communication Majors and a Great School for Business/Finance Majors. For seven years in a row, HPU has been named a College of Distinction with special recognition for business and education programs, and The National Council on Teacher Quality ranks HPU’s elementary education program as one of the best in the nation. The university offers 50 undergraduate majors, 57 undergraduate minors and 13 graduate degree programs. It is a member of the NCAA, Division I and the Big South Conference. Visit High Point University on the web at highpoint.edu.

Attachments:

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/e3a1bfc3-6fae-4278-8dbf-24c2e5adda5a

Attachments:

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/9ec450f3-b9dd-43b9-8e1d-8cd05ebfb7b7

CONTACT: Pam Haynes
High Point University
3368419055
phaynes@highpoint.edu

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