Alberta Government Improves on Energy and Pipeline Management

Still, the New Democrats are now tied for second place with the Progressive Conservatives, as Wildrose Party leads.

Calgary, AB – The Alberta government is connecting with the public on energy and pipelines, but continues to lag on other issues, the Insights West “Alberta Government Report Card” has found.

The online survey of a representative sample of Albertans also shows that concerns about the economy and jobs have reached the highest level recorded in the province over the past two and a half years.

Issues and Governance

Seven-in-ten Albertans (70%, +5 since an Insights West poll conducted in May 2016) believe the economy and jobs is the most important issue facing the province, followed by health care, government accountability and energy and pipelines (all at 6%).

When it comes to the way the provincial government is managing specific issues, two-in-five residents (41%, +15) say it is doing a good job on energy and pipelines, and more than a third feel the same way about education (37%, -7) and the environment (37%, -6).

There is an evident drop in satisfaction with other issues, including climate change (34%, -6), health care (31%, -4), crime and public safety (28%, -6) and accountability (27%, -5). The two lowest ranked issues are the economy and jobs (23%, +1) and housing, poverty and homelessness (22%, -3).

“The Alberta government improved markedly on its handling of energy and pipelines, immediately after the federal approval of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain project,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “However, only about one-in-four Albertans are satisfied with economic management, which is also the most important issue facing the province.”

Two decisions by the Alberta government are rated positively by a majority of residents: reducing the small business tax rate from 3% to 2%, effective in 2017 (58%, +2) and banning political donations from corporations and unions (57%, +3). More than two-in-five Albertans are also satisfied with the decisions to increase the minimum wage (47%, +1), initiate a Mental Health Review to approach addiction and mental health issues (42%, -3) and dealing with pending pipeline projects (42%, +13).

The rating is lower for four other decisions: taking action to reduce Alberta’s greenhouse gas emissions (37%, -6), handling relations with Alberta’s First Nations (29% -6), announcing the implementation of a carbon tax (28%, =) and dealing with Fentanyl and drug abuse in the province (26%).

Politics

About a third of decided voters in Alberta (34%, -1 since an Insights West survey conducted in July) say they would vote for the Wildrose Party if a provincial election took place tomorrow. There is a tie for second place, with both the governing NDP and the Progressive Conservatives at 27%. Support is lower for the Liberal Party with (5%) and the Alberta Party with (2%).

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Practically half of Albertans (49%, -2) approve of the way official opposition and Wildrose Party leader Brian Jean is handling his duties. No other provincial party leader reaches the 40% mark in Alberta, with Premier and NDP leader Rachel Notley at 37% (-1), acting Progressive Conservative Party leader Ric McIver at 34% (+8), acting Liberal Party leader David Swann at 23% (=) and Alberta Party leader Greg Clark at 22% (+5).

Jean is also the only party leader with a positive momentum score this month (+8, with 23% saying their opinion of the Wildrose leader has improved over the past six months). All other party leaders hold negative numbers (Notley -32, Swann -8, McIver -7,Clark -4).

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary.

Most of our surveys are conducted through our Your Insights panel. The Your Insights panel is comprised of 30,000 Canadians who share their opinions on a variety of political, economic, social and other issues while earning the opportunity to get paid and win great prizes. If you’re interested in joining, please register at yourinsights.ca.

About this Release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from December 2 to December 5, 2016, among 701 adult Albertans. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.7 percentage points. Click here to view the detailed data tabulations.

For further information, please contact:

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs, Insights West
778-929-0490
mariocanseco@insightswest.com

 

Photograph: Zuhallem