Study highlights likes, dislikes of Alberta oil sands

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, June 11 -- Both Canadians and Americans consider Alberta oil sands to be a secure oil supply, said results of a Canadian-US survey by Fleishman-Hilliard Inc.

Executives of the public relations firm released the survey results June 11 during a Canadian American Business Council meeting in Washington, DC.

Cross-border differences were most evident when survey respondents ranked the importance of environmental concerns about oil sands compared with the importance of oil sands potential as a secure North American oil supply.

Canadian respondents split almost equally regarding economic and environmental concerns. The survey showed 46% ranked environmental concerns as the most important while 43% ranked secure supply as most important.

Of American respondents, 55% listed a secure supply as being their most important concern while 33% listed environmental concerns.

For both countries, the remaining respondents said neither was the most important or that they didn't know.

Survey findings
Fleishman-Hillard Canada Research surveyed 500 Canadians and 500 Americans in an online poll during May and June. The margin of error was 3.1%.

Survey respondents were representative of the US and Canadian populations in terms of region, age, language, and gender.

The survey showed 67% of Canadians and 47% of Americans were somewhat to very aware of oil sands in Alberta. Other findings were:

-- When asked if future oil sands development was a "good or bad thing," 75% of Canadians and 68% of Americans said "a good thing."

-- When asked how important the Alberta oil sands are to the overall security of the North American energy supply, 83% of Americans vs 73% of Canadians said it was important.

-- When asked if Alberta oil sands are critical for dealing with North American dependence on foreign oil, 40% of Americans agreed compared with 26% of Canadians.

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