Canadians Prefer Diversity

Majority of Canadians support investments in clean technology for job creation and a more diverse economy less dependent on oil: Poll 

Blue Green Canada hired Research House to ask Canadians their opinions on the state of the economy and their preference in the direction Canada should take for economic growth. This national online poll was fielded from September 28 to October 1, 2015 with a total of 1,208 interviews conducted. The poll set population based quotas to ensure accurate regional representation across the country.

Eighty per cent of Canadians surveyed agree that Canada should be doing more to support innovation and investment in clean technologies that help create jobs. This support was clear and unwavering across the country ranging from 76 per cent support in the Prairie Provinces to 88 per cent in Atlantic Canada.  

The clean technology sector encompasses a broad range of industries, from wind turbines and solar panels to industrial and household energy efficiency, advancements in transportation, recycling and remediation, biorefinery products, and wastewater and agriculture-related activities.

A majority of Canadians, 63 per cent, support a diversified economic plan that is less dependent on the oil and gas resource sector. This result compared favourably to just 15 per cent of respondents preferring an economic plan focused more on the promotion and growth of the oil and gas resource sector. 63 per cent of Ontarians preferred a diverse economic plan with just 14 per cent wanting more focus on oil and gas to grow the economy. Only 30 per cent of Albertans preferred more promotion and growth of oil and gas as the way to move the economy forward compared to 61 per cent supporting a more diverse economic path.  

40 per cent of Canadians feel Canada’s economic strategy has been too focussed on the growth of the oil and gas sector at the expense of our nation’s manufacturing sector. This was the top opinion across the country outside of the Prairie Provinces. 47% of Quebec respondents and 42% of Ontarians felt too much of focus on the growth of the oil and gas sector has harmed Canadian manufacturing compared to 25% of respondents in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba sharing this view.    

Canada’s next government can act to diversify the economy to reduce our reliance on oil exports, while meeting the climate challenge head-on by reinvigorating other sectors of the economy like the country’s manufacturing sector and investing in innovative clean technologies. Doing so would send a clear message to Canadians and the world that our nation will be a leader in the booming global green economy.

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For more information on this poll and its results, download our key findings document