Public backs renewables but is less keen on fracking and nuclear power

5th August 2015

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  • Energy ,
  • Renewable ,
  • Conventional


Clare Meadows

Public support for renewable energy remains high, with 75% in favour, while support for fracking has fallen to just 21%, according to the latest Decc opinion survey.

The proportion opposing fracking has increased to 28%, reversing earlier trends when 27% supported fracking and 21% opposed it.

Decc says support for fracking appears to be linked to awareness, with opposition the strongest among those that know a lot about the technology to extract onshore gas and oil – 54% oppose it compared with 32% in favour.

Donna Hume, senior energy campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said: “It's little surprise that the more people find out about the risks of fracking, the more they oppose it.”

The popularity of nuclear energy is also declining, reaching its lowest level so far recorded by Decc’s tracker survey since it began in 2012, although it is still more popular than fracking. A third of respondents support nuclear power, with 24% opposed. In the 2014 poll, nuclear power was approved by 36% of respondents.

Around 40% indicated that they neither support nor oppose the use of nuclear energy – a rise of 4% since the previous survey. A high proportion of respondents (85%) said they knew very little or nothing at all about the way radioactive waste is managed in the UK.

Support for renewable energy remains high at 75%, having fluctuated between 75% and 82% since 2012. Just 4% of those surveyed for the latest poll are opposed to renewables, with just 1% strongly opposed.


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