National Survey: Voters Demand Action on Clean Energy

Survey Shows Opportunity for GOP to Take Lead in Energy Debate
Washington, D.C. — Today, Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES) released their latest national survey providing an update on key trends in support for energy solutions. The study, which took place Sept 12 – 15, 2016, revealed that with less than eight weeks to go before Election Day, large majorities of likely voters continue to support candidates and elected officials who back federal action on clean energy solutions.

“In the closing weeks of a highly polarizing election cycle, our polling continues to find high levels of bipartisan support for action on clean energy solutions. A tremendous opportunity exists for Republican leaders and candidates to command the attention of likely voters across the political spectrum by seizing upon commonsense energy reforms that strengthen America’s energy, economic, and environmental security,” said James Dozier, Chairman and Executive Director of Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions.

“Counter to expectations in the closing weeks of a highly charged national campaign, large majorities of likely voters continue to support federal action in taking steps to reduce emissions of gases like carbon dioxide that cause global climate change. Whether candidates or elected officials discuss clean energy solutions through the lens of the economy and jobs, national security or clean air and water, these results show that voters are going to continue to reward candidates who embrace or back clean energy solutions,” said Ashlee Stephenson of Just Win Strategies.

Voters think about the energy debate through three key lenses: (i) the economy and jobs, (ii) national security, and (iii) the environment: A plurality of voters (34%) indicate they think about the current energy debate through an “all of the above” viewpoint when offered areas through which energy is often discussed. In addition, thirty-one percent (31%) think it is an economic (26%) or jobs (5%) issue, followed by fifteen percent (15%) who say it is an environmental issue and thirteen percent (13%) who select national security.

There is a tremendous opportunity for Republican candidates and elected officials to lead on the energy debate as it relates to the economy and jobs, and in turn, appealing to voters across the political spectrum. Indeed, there is little variance by party when asked through which lens energy is viewed, with nearly one-third across partisan lines selecting the economy (GOP: 28%, Dem: 27%, Ind: 24%).  Similarly, roughly the same number of respondents in each party select national security as the way they think about energy (GOP: 15%, Dem: 14%, Ind: 13%).

Candidates for public office and elected officials would benefit from supporting a clean energy plan: A full three-quarters (75%) in the September research said they would be more likely to support a candidate for public office who supports a clean energy plan that promotes the diversification and growth of clean energy sources, like wind, solar and hydropower. Just nine percent (9%) would be less likely to support a candidate who embraces a clean energy plan.

Key demographic groups are driving the debate and support for clean energy solutions: Our research continues to reveal that key demographic groups and voting blocs, particularly those that makeup the composition of many swing electorates in battleground states, are driving the support for clean energy solutions. Young voters, ages 18-29 (82%) and 30-39 (86%) are the leading age groups those who favor federal action on carbon emissions. In addition, nearly nine out of ten Hispanics (89%) support federal action on emissions.

In addition to support for federal action, key voting blocs are going to continue to reward candidates who embrace or back clean energy solutions or a clean energy plan.

Young age groups in particular are driving those who are more likely to vote for a candidate that backs a clean energy plan (18-29: 86% more likely, 30-39: 85% more likely). Women (71%) and men alike (79%) are more likely to support a candidate who supports a clean energy plan, and there are strong majorities among those who are Hispanic (78%), African American (84%) and white (74%). Voters are hungry for solutions, and the data continues to reveal candidates who support a clean energy plan or set of solutions will be rewarded, especially among growing segments of the general election population.

Click here to read the polling memo from CRES and Just Win Strategies.

Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions and Just Win Strategies fielded a national study among n=1,061 adults nationwide in an online survey from September 12-15, 2016. The margin of error is + 3.1%.


Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization advocating for comprehensive and responsible solutions to our nation’s energy issues. The organization is comprised of citizens from around the country who believe it is time for politicians in Washington to stop arguing, and start working on ways to solve our nation’s energy crisis.

Facebook IconYouTube IconTwitter IconFollow Us On Instagram