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    Poll shows support for oil and gas in Quebec


Quebecers appear tired of sending C$5bn a year out of province on imports.

by: Dale Lunan

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Poll shows support for oil and gas in Quebec

New polling by the Montreal Economic Institute (MEI) released March 17 shows that more than half of Quebecers think their province should develop its own oil and gas resources, despite a move by premier Francois Legault to ban all oil and gas production there.

The online poll conducted by Ipsos on behalf of the MEI between February 25 and March 2 found 52% of Quebecers believe their province should develop its own resources instead of importing all the oil and gas it consumes.


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The poll opened after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine, MEI CEO Michel Kelly-Gagnon said, and Quebecers were responding to the impact the invasion could have on global supplies of hydrocarbons.

“It’s clear that energy issues leave no one indifferent and that Quebecers understand the role we must play in producing natural gas, notably for export to our European allies,” he said.

Even with a strong environmental lobby active in Quebec media, 50% of poll respondents said that some of the moves taken by environmental organisations are preventing too many job-creation projects in the province from moving forward.

“Many pressure groups are pushing the Legault government to reject all new hydrocarbon development projects,” MEI economist Miguel Ouelette said. “The government has even decided to introduce a bill to close the door on all development projects. Yet we send over C$5bn a year out of province, in normal times, to cover our consumption of oil and natural gas. Quebecers should have the choice of buying local or not. At the moment, the government is choosing for them, and Quebecers have had enough.”

Michael Binnion, CEO of Questerre Energy – which is sitting on a massive Utica shale gas resource in Quebec’s St Lawrence Lowlands – told NGW the MEI poll is consistent with Questerre’s own research.

A clear majority of Quebecers support local natural gas, he said, and in the case of Questerre’s proposals to develop the Utica resource in partnership with local First Nations using new low-carbon technology, opposition is only at 13%.

“Political elites are completely out of touch with ordinary Quebecers,” Binnion said in an email to NGW. “We were repeatedly assured if we could achieve social license in Quebec we would be supported. It’s clear to me that entrenched interests in Quebec are blocking natural gas to the disadvantage of Quebec citizens.”