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Two-thirds of Americans Surveyed Support ANWR Exploration
ANWR viewed as reducing foreign oil dependence and strengthening
National security, according to survey


February 03, 2005

Washington - Sixty-seven percent of Americans support oil and gas exploration and development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) according to a recent survey by The Luntz Research Companies. Citing a concern with dependence on foreign oil and the need for increased national security, the public views oil and gas from ANWR as a strong component of a diverse energy solution to address America's future energy needs.

Alaskans have long-supported exploration and development within ANWR with the knowledge that exploring ANWR is safe and will not damage the environment. Recognizing the need for balance between responsible energy exploration and minimal impact on the environment, two-thirds of the American public also believes that "by using 21st century technology and advanced engineering that already exists, ANWR can be developed and the environment protected."

"Our national security is inextricably linked to our dependence on foreign oil," said Governor Frank H. Murkowski. "This research shows that Americans understand and support the role ANWR can play in reducing our nation's dependence on OPEC and Middle Eastern oil. Alaskans know that we can protect the environment and develop our natural resources, creating jobs for Alaska and the nation and providing America with a secure supply of American oil. That's good news for the country and good news for Alaskans."

The Luntz Research findings challenge the claims of a Zogby International poll sponsored by the Wilderness Society and other environmental groups which claim that the majority of Americans oppose opening ANWR. For example, Zogby based one of its ANWR opposition claims on a multiple-choice question asking the best way to reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil. Seventeen percent of respondents chose "drill for more oil and gas including areas within wildlife refuges." Another question touted fifty-nine percent agreement with a statement saying that not enough oil exists in ANWR to change prices and would take a decade to develop.

Last week, Harris Interactive published a separate, independent poll finding that a strong majority of Americans believe we are in an energy crisis. Nearly 60 percent of respondents supported "energy reform to allow companies to drill for oil in certain areas such as . . . ANWR."

Specifically, the Luntz Survey found:

  • 84% of those surveyed agree that America needs American oil and that we need to develop our energy resources right here in America and not depend on foreign and Middle Eastern oil for our economic security.
  • 65% of Americans believe ANWR represents a secure American supply of oil that could help reduce U.S. demand for foreign oil for 25 years or more.
  • 64% feel that oil from ANWR would reduce American dependence on OPEC and Middle Eastern oil.
  • 63% of Americans think ANWR development would create hundreds of thousands of American jobs affecting virtually every state.

The survey was conducted in January 2005 among 800 registered voters nationwide and sponsored by Arctic Power.


Source of News:

Office of the Governor
Web Site


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