Survey: Westerners Want to Keep Environmental Regulations In Place

Feb 23, 2011

Albuquerque, NM – Two thirds of voters surveyed in New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, and Utah said current environmental laws are either not strong enough or should be better enforced.

David Metz is one of the pollsters. "It's a real ratification that the level of environmental protection that is present in the region is one that voters are comfortable with and want to see continue," he says. Eleven percent of voters surveyed said they want to see environmental regulations rolled back or eliminated.

Across the political spectrum, respondents said they supported policies like the Environmental Protection Agency's regulation of greenhouse gases. Metz says only conservative Republicans were divided about EPA limits on carbon emissions. "But all other voters, whether it's moderate or liberal republicans, independents, democrats, we've got well over 60 percent saying they favor it," he says.

The survey also found that over 4 out of 5 voters would be willing to pay more for electricity from renewable sources and nearly three quarters of voters want to shift their reliance on coal energy to wind and solar.

A bipartisan team of pollsters surveyed 2200 voters. The project was paid for by the William and Flora Hewlitt Foundation in collaboration with the Colorado College State of the Rockies Project.