Processing Magazine

US consumers oppose natural gas exports, poll finds

April 10, 2013
natural gas exports
Only 29 percent of those surveyed support exporting natural gas to other countries.

According to a new poll conducted by the University of Texas, 39 percent of Americans believe the U.S. should not export the natural gas it produces domestically. Only 28 percent said they support exporting natural gas to other countries.

The UT Energy Poll, conducted online March 11-20, indicates U.S. consumers generally favor domestic energy production, but they are divided on the natural gas boom. In particular, survey participants had mixed feelings about the use of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking.

Overall, 45 percent of respondents familiar with fracking say they support its use for fossil fuel extraction, down from 48 percent a year ago, while 41 percent say they oppose the practice. The potential for water contamination topped the list of specific concerns.

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“More consumers — 43 percent today versus 38 percent a year ago — say there should be more regulation of hydraulic fracturing,” said Sheril Kirshenbaum, director of the UT Energy Poll. “Still, we also see steady support for the expansion of domestic natural gas development.”