Views of Pipeline Expansion in British Columbia Remain Stable

Two thirds believe the project will create hundreds of jobs, but fewer than two-in-five expect lower gas prices.

Vancouver, BC [December 18, 2019] – After six months that included a federal election, the perceptions of British Columbians on pipeline expansion did not go through a severe fluctuation, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, 56% of British Columbians agree with the federal government’s decision to re-approve the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion, while 35% disagree and 10% are undecided.

“There has been practically no change in the way British Columbians feel about this project,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Our survey from June also showed 56% of British Columbians agreeing with the re-approval of the project.”

More than seven-in-ten residents of Southern BC (74%) and Northern BC (71%) are in favour of the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion. Support for the course of action authorized by the federal government is lower in the Fraser Valley (59%), Metro Vancouver (51%) and Vancouver Island (49%).

There is a sizeable gender gap on this question. While two thirds of men (66%) agree with the pipeline expansion, only 46% of women concur.

Two thirds of British Columbians (68%, -5 since May) expect the Trans Mountain Pipeline to create hundreds of jobs for British Columbians—an argument that resonates especially well with 81% of those who voted for the BC Liberals in the 2017 provincial election.

Three-in-five British Columbians (59%, unchanged) say they are disappointed with the way the federal government has handled the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion. 

More than two-in-five British Columbians (45%, -1) believe the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion threatens the health and safety of British Columbians. Voters who cast ballots for the BC Green Party (64%) and the BC New Democratic Party (NDP) (59%) in 2017 are more likely to have this point of view.

Across the province, 40% of British Columbians (-1) believe the provincial government should do anything necessary to ensure that the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion does not happen—including 45% of women, 51% of residents aged 18-to-34, and 63% of BC Green Party voters in 2017.

The notion of gas prices being lower in British Columbia now that the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion has been re-approved is convincing for just over a third of British Columbians (37%, -2).

Methodology:

Results are based on an online study conducted from December 4 to December 7, 2019, among 800 adults in British Columbia. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our full data set here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.
[c] 778.929.0490
[e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca