Climate Institute poll finds Australians support renewables

wind turbines and solar

Renewables appear to be a vote winner. Someone may want to tell our government.

Banish any questions you may have had about whether or not Australians support renewables. If you listen to certain, unnamed cash-for-comment shock jocks, certainly in NSW anyway, you’d be of the opinion that Aussies generally find solar power and wind farms completely objectionable.

Of course nothing is further from the truth as a poll released by The Climate Institute last week to coincide with the unveiling (dare we say unravelling?) of the government’s emissions reduction target. The poll shows the extent to which Aussies prefer solar and wind energy over that of fossil fuel.

When given the option of eight energy sources, a vast majority of respondents chose solar and wind over traditional energy sources in their top three chosen forms of power.

“Most (84 per cent, up 2 points) prefer solar amongst their top three energy sources, followed by wind (69 per cent, up 5 points). Gas and nuclear both crashed 7 points to 21 and 13 per cent respectively, with nuclear and coal now tied as least preferred,” said John Connor, CEO of The Climate Institute in a press release.

But it gets worse for fossil fuel advocates as 72 percent of people surveyed by the Institute agreeing that the orderly closure of old coal plants be carried out in favour of clean energy options. Also 65 percent agreed with the statement that “reducing the investment in wind farms and householder solar power is the opposite of what is needed”.

Can’t really get much more emphatic that that.

Clearly Australians support renewables over fossil fuels by a wide margin. Which makes the Government’s decision to isolate itself from voters by backing fossil fuels all the more mystifying.

This week’s anticipated decision on the setting of a 26 percent target, despite the political spin, is nothing more than paying lip service to the problem of cutting carbon emissions. On top of a considered campaign to destroy renewable energy in this country, as well as trash talking the effectiveness of clean energy (see above), the government has gone way beyond what is normal and acceptable for even a government known for its partisan nature.

However the survey shows these renewable energy policies of this government to be “on the nose” of the electorate.

Australians support renewables? Absolutely, all we need now is a federal government that reflects the electorate’s view. The survey shows both the government and the Opposition need to “join mainstream Australian attitudes with climate commitments and policies” that promote clean energy, said Mr Connor.


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