Poll: Virginia backs Clean Power Plan on eve of big Senate vote

congressThe Sierra Club released polling Friday showing significant support for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan among registered voters in Virginia. The new polls come on the eve of votes expected next week in the US Senate on Congressional Review Act resolutions intended to derail the policy and its historic public health protections against carbon pollution.

The polling, which was conducted by Public Policy Polling, found that 62 percent of respondents trusted the EPA more than elected members of Congress (who polled at 25) to decide whether there should be limits on air and water pollution, with an identical percentage favoring the Clean Power Plan. Additionally, 57 percent of respondents said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate for U.S. Senate from Virginia if he/she supported the Clean Power Plan, including 35 percent who said they would be much more likely to vote for such a candidate.

“This polling reflects what we have been hearing in communities across the state in recent months. The majority of Virginians support the Clean Power Plan and want to see action on climate change,” said Kate Addleson, Conservation Director for the Virginia Chapter of Sierra Club. “This is a winning issue for Virginia leaders.”

Climate change is an increasingly important issue for Virginia voters. 54 percent have reached the consensus that climate change is a serious problem, with 36 percent of those saying that it is a very serious problem. The polling also revealed that a majority of Virginians think that the state should be investing more in clean, renewable energy sources like solar and wind instead of traditional sources like coal, oil, and natural gas.

“This data clearly shows that majorities in Virginia support the EPA’s Clean Power Plan,” said Grace McRae, Sierra Club’s Polling and Research Director. “Voters across the partisan spectrum want the EPA to limit dangerous carbon pollution and are ready to support candidates who will act to make that happen.”