More than half of Canadians surveyed want their next federal government to build the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion between Alberta and British Columbia, according to a new poll.
An online survey of more than 1,500 respondents in August by the Angus Reid Institute found that Canadians were more than twice as likely to say the next federal government should proceed with and complete the pipeline project, with 53 per cent of respondents saying so, as opposed to those who say it should be stopped, at 24 per cent.
The Liberal government bought the pipeline for $4.5 billion last year. Some construction is already underway, and the government now says the expanded pipeline will be operational by mid-2022.
Despite the support for the project, most Canadians also want federal funding to be invested in renewable energy sources instead of non-renewables.
Over 60 per cent of respondents view renewable energy as a "huge opportunity" for Canada. According to Natural Resources Canada, only 17 per cent of Canada's total energy supply comes from renewable sources like wind and solar energy.
"It seems like Canadians are supportive of a diverse energy portfolio," said Dave Korzinski, a research associate at Angus Reid. "They like the idea of completing the pipeline but also using that money to invest in renewable resources."
Read more about the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion
Among the provinces, only Quebec voiced more opposition than support for the Trans Mountain expansion. The project has a slight edge in approval in British Columbia and Ontario, where a little over half of respondents want it to proceed.
Albertans remain the pipeline's biggest proponents, with 85 per cent of respondents from that province in support of its expansion.