Half of Canadians fear eco-terror attacks

Aug. 20, 2012 at 12:39 PM
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OTTAWA, Aug. 20 (UPI) -- Half of Canadians fear attacks by eco-terrorists, a poll reports, and nearly half approve of spying on environmental and other groups as a way to thwart them.

Half of those surveyed said they believe the possibility of an attack on the country's energy infrastructure facilities to be either high or moderate, the Winnipeg Sun reported.

The poll was commissioned by Sun News Network and conducted by Abacus Data of Ottawa.

Fears were strongest among supporters of the Conservative Party. Two thirds of its supporters considered eco-threats to be high or moderate. People who identified themselves as supporters of the National Democratic Party felt almost as strongly: 47 percent saw the threat as high or moderate.

On Jan. 9, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver published a letter charging that "environmental and other radical groups" were blocking opportunities to "diversity our trade."

Of the 2,000 people who participated in the survey, 49 percent agreed with a statement that environmental groups were to blame for illegal activities against pipeline construction. Some 75 percent of conservative voters agreed while 42 percent of NDP voters somewhat or strongly disagreed."

About 52 percent of those asked strongly or somewhat supported the idea of posting armed guards at all major oil and gas refineries.

Abacus did not say when the poll, reported Monday, was conducted. The pollster said the data was weighted to reflect the latest census data. A margin of error was not given because Abacus said panelists were not selected randomly.

A group of randomly selected participants of the same size would have a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 percent 19 times out of 20,

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