Poll Finds Overwhelming Support for Wind Power in Nebraska

Release Date: 

04/20/2010

Contact(s): 

John Crabtree, Center for Rural Affairs, johnc@cfra.org, (563) 581-2867
Lyons, Nebraska - Today a new poll released by the Center for Rural Affairs, American Wind Energy Association, and Wind Coalition and Energy Foundation, found that a strong majority of Nebraska voters -- 79 percent -- favors requiring electric utilities to use renewable energy sources for at least 20 percent of the power they generate.
According to the poll, 94% of Nebraska voters hold favorable impressions of wind power and 69% express their impressions as strongly favorable.

Support among Nebraska voters for the 20% renewable electricity standard proposal is driven by concern over rising energy prices (important to 75%) and our dependence on foreign oil (important to 73%) rather than by a concern for the environment (important to 58%).

"We're most encouraged by the fact that the strong support for wind energy knows no geographic, political or demographic bounds. From Falls City to Scottsbluff, from Hartington to Imperial, rural and urban, Republican and Democrat, there is overwhelming support for wind energy and more than 3 to 1 support for a 20% renewable electricity standard," said John Crabtree of the Center for Rural Affairs.

According to Crabtree, 91% of Nebraska voters surveyed agreed with the statement, "Nebraska should meet its electricity needs by using renewable energy such as wind power."

"Clearly, a vast majority of Nebraskans recognize the economic importance of wind energy development for the entire state.  In rural Nebraska, in particular, there are tremendous economic opportunities for farmers, ranchers and rural communities playing a pivotal role in America's energy future.  The Nebraska Legislature has helped clear the way for exporting electricity generated from wind power outside Nebraska. What remains is to create a national market for that wind energy, namely through Congressional passage of a 20% federal renewable energy standard," added Crabtree.

The renewable energy poll was conducted by Global Strategy Group on behalf of the organizations releasing the poll. Their memo on the poll results as well as polling data toplines and tables are available at: http://files.cfra.org/pdf/NE-Wind-Poll-Memo.pdf, and http://files.cfra.org/pdf/NE-Wind-Poll-Topline-Tables.pdf.

The poll was conducted on a sample of 500 registered voters in Nebraska. Telephone interviewing was conducted February 7-10, 2010. The sample was selected in such a manner that all households with a working landline telephone were equally likely to be contacted. All polls are subject to errors associated with interviewing a sample rather than the entire universe. The estimation associated with a sample of 500 is +/-4.4 points. In other words, these results are within 4.4 points of the results that would be obtained from interviewing the entire population of Nebraska registered voters.

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