The findings of a WBUR/MassINC poll reported last week show a dramatic drop in confidence in natural gas infrastructure and a drop in the public's view of gas in the state's energy mix. While some have attributed this to the aftermath of the Merrimack Valley explosions, a closer look at past data suggests that skepticism about gas had already taken hold among the electorate.
First, There is overwhelming support for renewables: 84 percent of respondents said there should be more solar power in Massachusetts, while 80 percent said the state should rely more on wind power.
Reporting focused on the recent shift: Natural gas saw the greatest shift in voter attitudes from 2015, when WBUR asked the same question.
This year, Forty-two percent of 2018 respondents said Massachusetts should rely on gas more.; 41 percent chose less. Three years ago, 50 percent of respondents said the state should rely more on gas and 31 percent chose less.
But the drop in support was even more dramatic in the previous 3 year period. In 2011, fully 66% of people thought we should rely more on gas. Gas adherents have gone from a 2-1 edge to an even question.
Despite many millions in corporate advertising and a relentless political push, this fossil fuel is on its way to extinction.
If you would like to help the families who have been displaced or suffered hardship as a result of the pipeline explosions in the Merrimack Valley, please go to http://eccf.org/GLdisasterrelieffund
Best wishes for a clean, healthy and safe enviornment,