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API Poll Shows Strong Support for Keystone, Other Projects

Yet another poll has been released gauging support for TransCanada Corp.'s Keystone XL pipeline, this time showing that an overwhelming bipartisan majority of American voters are in favor of the project and other large-scale energy infrastructure development across the country.

The American Petroleum Institute (API) said market research firm Harris Interactive conducted the poll between Dec. 5-8 among 1,025 registered voters. The results, released this week, found that 72% of those surveyed agree that the Keystone project is in the nation's best interest, while 63% said they would like to see the U.S. import more of the oil it needs from Canada rather than other foreign countries. The poll had a sampling error of plus or minus three points.

The 1,179 mile Keystone pipeline would transport crude oil from Alberta to refineries on the Gulf Coast, as well as provide U.S. onshore operators greater access to those facilities. The southern portion of the project has already been approved, but the northern portion has proved controversial, miring the pipeline in a political stalemate of sorts (see Shale Daily, Jan. 28). The project still needs a presidential permit from the U.S. State Department.

Poll after poll has been conducted on the necessity of the project. In March, the Center for Biological Diversity released a poll showing that Americans, particularly those who supported President Barack Obama in the 2012 election, oppose the project. Much of the opposition is to the fact that it will carry extremely heavy oil from Alberta’s tar sands, the production of which, they claim, is environmentally hazardous. 

Dozens of other pipeline projects across the country are waiting for approval as well, with oil and gas companies recently voicing concerns over the regulatory climate and viewing it as a threat to their businesses (see Shale Daily, June 10).

API's poll also showed that 93% of respondents said they agreed that increased development of energy infrastructure would help create jobs, while 89% agreed that infrastructure investment would strengthen U.S. energy security.

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