Poll: U.S. Voters Recognize Future Role of Natural Gas and Oil
Posted April 21, 2021
Soon after the 2020 election we noted that results showed U.S. voters are mostly moderate and practical and want sensible solutions to key issues facing the nation, which Democratic pollster Mark Penn wrote is driven by common sense over ideology. Americans’ views on energy certainly fit that construct.
New polling by Morning Consult on behalf of API underscores the point and provides important context for Washington policymakers as they debate the twin issues of energy and climate. Top results from nearly 2,000 registered voters, surveyed on how they see the future of energy:
- 59% believe the world will use more energy in 2050 than it does now. Majorities of Democrats, Independents and Republicans believe more energy will be needed to heat and cool buildings, run electrical appliances, travel, grow crops and more.
- 73% agree that natural gas and oil will be part of the energy mix for decades to come and should be included in the country’s energy policies. Majorities of Democrats, Independents and Republicans agree.
- 73% believe the natural gas and oil industry should be allowed to participate when governments are considering energy and environmental policies. Again, Democrats, Independents and Republicans agree.
- 55% believe private-sector scientists and experts will do better than the government in solving the issue of climate change. Just 22% believe the government will do a better job than the private sector.
Again, these solid, bipartisan views should guide the national public policy debate. We believe the poll reflects the way Americans value our country’s modern standard of living, a growing economy, expanding opportunity and keeping the nation’s energy security strong.
All of the above are supported by reliable, affordable natural gas and oil, which supply nearly 70% of the energy Americans use every day, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Safely and responsibly providing that energy is our industry’s No. 1 task.
To ensure safe and responsible development, API recently released its Climate Action Framework, a plan to meet the challenge of meeting the world’s growing need for energy while also advancing a lower-carbon future.
It’s a plan of action to accelerate the technologies and innovation that support global leaders’ goal of reduced emissions across the broader economy, including those associated with energy production, transportation and use by consumers.
It calls for further mitigating emissions from operations, including direct regulation of methane from new and existing sources. It endorses an economy-wide, transparent government carbon price policy and builds on industry’s advancing cleaner fuels to give consumers lower-carbon options. The plan affirms API’s support for timely and accurate reporting of greenhouse gas emissions from all emitting sectors and commits our industry to drive climate/sustainability reporting.
Through each of these industry resolves to meet growing energy demand while protecting the environment and addressing the risks of climate change. We believe the plan’s common-sense, workable elements and focus on market-based approaches fit well with most Americans’ energy views, as described in the Morning Consult survey.
(Methodology: This poll was conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of API between April 12-14, 2021, among a national sample of 1,991 registered voters. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.)
About The Author
Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Previously, Mark was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor at an assortment of newspapers. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela have two grown children and six grandchildren.