Survey: Statewide Opposition to Proposed Power Plants Significant

Two-thirds of Texans oppose the construction of new proposed coal-fired power plants, with 47% strongly opposing, while an overwhelming 81% reject Governor Perry’s executive order to fast-track the plants’ permits, according to a survey of 600 randomly selected Texas residents released Dec. 6 by the Environmental Integrity Project. The survey, conducted by Opinion Research Corporation, a global polling organization, even addressed factors such as political party affiliation – finding that only 22% of Republicans favored Perry’s fast-tracking tactics. While 82% of respondents voiced concern about the increased health risks associated with the plants, 47% said they are “not aware at all” of Governor Perry’s fast-track orders. Additionally, 74% of Texans would prefer to see major conservation efforts undertaken to offset a significant portion of the electricity that’s required from the new coal plants, according to the study. “Texans do not want to see the state shortchange the deliberate review that should take place to determine what would be very serious environmental and health downsides of these needlessly dirty power sources,” said EIP Counsel Ilan Levin. Former EPA Regulatory Enforcement Director Eric Schaeffer founded the EIP in 2002 after he resigned in protest of Bush Administration efforts to weaken the Clean Air Act and other environmental laws. “To say that Governor Perry has no mandate from the public for his plan to rubber stamp these dirty power plants may be the understatement of the year,” Levin said.

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