Canadians are split over Teck Resources Limited's Frontier project, according to a new study by the Angus Reid Institute released on Wednesday.
The federal government is expected to make a decision on the project at the end of February.
Support overall narrowly outpaces opposition, 49 per cent to 40 per cent. One-quarter (24%) say they strongly support the construction of the $20 billion mine, primarily comprised of prairie residents and past Conservative voters. Meanwhile, the same number (25%) say they strongly oppose the project, led by left-leaning Quebecers and British Columbians, according to Angus Reid.
Asked whether Teck’s intention to be carbon-neutral by 2050 would sway their support at all, one-in-five opponents (21%) say they may be a little more likely to consider the project, while 77 per cent say it makes no difference.
- Awareness of the Teck Frontier mine is regionally disparate. In British Columbia and Alberta, news of the project has been followed closely, while fewer have been following elsewhere
- Few Canadians are confident the project will ultimately be completed due to market conditions. Just 16 per cent say they feel it will ‘absolutely’ be finished if approved.
Disparate support levels across regions
Public opinion of the Teck Mine is divided. One-quarter of Canadians each strongly support (24%) and moderately support (25%) the project, while the same number strongly oppose it (25%). The rest are either moderately opposed (16%) or unsure (10%).
Support is highest in Alberta, though still significant in B.C. the prairies and Atlantic Canada, while strong opposition is particularly high in B.C. and Quebec:
Teck’s carbon neutral pledge
Support levels are higher among men, and older men in particular, while opposition is highest among young women.
Last week Teck said it intends to become “carbon-neutral” across all operations by 2050.
Among those who oppose it, only a handful say that they would support it if Teck were to become carbon-neutral, while just under one-in-five say they would be open to reconsidering their position. Most, approximately four-in-five, say this pledge changes nothing for them, personally: