Oregon people see more risk than benefits from bringing natural gas to the state, research shows

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Given that with natural gas emissions in the state, more Oregonians are aware of the environmental and public health damage than are receiving funding, a new study from Oregon State finds. University.

Today, six natural gas projects are planned on the Oregon coast but none have been built, the most recent being the Jordan Cove LNG project planned for Coos Bay, which was originally planned in the year 2004 and was fired last year.

“Oregon is seen as an important place to release natural gas to major markets in Asia, so ideas are coming in the future,” said the researcher. Rachel Mooney, who graduated from OSU with a bachelor’s degree in public policy last year. “But having public opposition is really going to make it a challenge for future projects in Oregon.”

The study, published in the journal KaiapuniIt is one of the few to pay close attention to the risk-benefit considerations of taking natural gas.

The researchers surveyed 500 Oregon adults in August 2019, with a pool that compared the entire Oregon population in terms of race, gender, age and education.

According to the researchers ’hypotheses, the results showed that people with a high level of education, young people, women, people of color and people perceived as liberal or inferior were more likely to experience risks. environmental or public harm to the economy. benefits associated with taking natural gas.

Political sentiment is the strongest predictor of optimism, with conservatives citing lower environmental degradation and better perceptions of the economy.

“Our findings about what strongly opposes or supports the release of natural gas are not surprising for current research,” said researcher Hilary Boudet. , a professor at OSU’s School of Public Policy. “Gender, age, race and political opinion are often all about ideas about developing energy in the ways we have seen, the more development is about fossil fuels. “

Of the educated population, 53% felt that natural gas transport was a major problem in the global climate and local environment, and 44-56% did not see little benefit to energy costs. energy security, local activities or the local economy. . On the other hand, only 21-27% saw significant economic benefits in those areas.

The effect of close proximity to the release points is not clear. While more comfortable and affordable, it is more economical and less stressful than those in rural areas where projects are available. The researchers hope to learn more about these relationships.

The researchers found these results to give credence to social science assumptions about how people use short -term thinking to determine their attitudes toward unfamiliar new technologies. At the same time, professional and counter -narratives work to fill that gap. For example, Mooney said, the coal industry has promoted the idea that natural gas could become a “bridge” fuel, helping to convert Americans from oil and coal to coal. new energy sources, even though environmentalists call it a “bridge to nowhere.” resulting in continued reliance on fossil fuels.

The current war in Ukraine and its impact on the oil market and the world has prompted more calls for the U.S. to provide new natural gas supplies to limit Russia’s influence, Boudet said. , Particularly in Europe, which relies heavily on Russian gas.

“It will be interesting to see how the industry is responding and what, if any, the natural gas emissions ideas we see in the future because the drivers are leaking. natural gas in Europe from the Mexico River and the East Coast, ”Boudet said. . “We are at a time when energy markets are not changing.”


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More information:
Rachel Mooney et al, Perceptions about natural gas damage in Oregon, Kaiapuni (2022). DOI: 10.1080 / 13549839.2022.2040470

Presented by Oregon State University

Directions: Oregon people have seen more harm than good from taking natural gas to the state, found in the study (2022, April 7) retrieved April 7, 2022 from https : //phys.org/news/2022-04-oregonians-greater-benefit-natural-gas .html

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