Pennsylvanians Want Federal Investments to Advance the Clean Energy Economy

Bipartisan Poll by The Nature Conservancy Finds Broad Support for Clean Energy Funding

HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — As the first anniversary of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) of 2022 approaches, both public and private sector organizations are working to implement the most significant climate legislation ever enacted by Congress. New research finds that the majority of Pennsylvanians support continuing these investments to advance the transition to a clean energy economy, with some of the highest levels of support coming from union households.

A recent bipartisan statewide survey found that majorities of Pennsylvania voters and labor union households support gradually transitioning to 100 percent of energy being produced from clean and renewable sources over the next 15 years. Nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of voters support this transition. The numbers are even higher among union households, with 73 percent saying they support the transition.

Commissioned by The Nature Conservancy and conducted by the bipartisan research team of FM3 Research (D) and New Bridge Strategy (R), the poll surveyed 600 registered voters across Pennsylvania between May 31-June 5, 2023. There was additional oversampling of 153 union households and 102 union members from the trades, manufacturing, shipping, driving, and freight worker sectors – representing industries which stand to benefit from these clean energy investments. The margin of error is +4.0%.

The poll found broad support from Keystone State voters and union members for federal laws that dedicate funding to help states address energy issues. Roughly two-thirds of each group (64 percent statewide; 68 percent among union households) reported wanting to continue these laws.

Nearly seven-in-ten voters statewide and eight-in-ten among union households say they would take advantage of tax incentives or low-interest loans to help them afford solar panels or improve energy efficiency if they qualified. Support for these policies likely stems from Pennsylvanians’ agreement that climate change is an issue that should be addressed.

“Overwhelmingly, Pennsylvanians are concerned about climate change and feel that we must act now to avoid the worst impacts to nature and people,” said Lori Brennan, Executive Director, The Nature Conservancy in Pennsylvania and Delaware. “This poll shows that statewide, there is broad support for a range of policies to address energy issues and reduce emissions. Pennsylvanians want to seize opportunities to leverage our state’s strong history of industrial innovation to power the clean energy economy of the future. One that benefits people and nature.”

Additional findings from the poll include:

  • Pennsylvanians feel that climate change is happening and that something should be done to address it. Seventy-eight percent of voters feel that addressing climate change should be a priority, and 70 percent find transitioning to clean energy and reducing carbon pollution is a good investment of taxpayers’ money. Among union households, 86 percent say addressing climate change is a priority and 78 percent say the transition is a good investment; over three-in-five say it is a very good investment.
  • Most Pennsylvania voters want to increase clean energy production. Nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of voters want to increase our use of solar energy to power homes and businesses in Pennsylvania, while 55 percent say the same about wind. Among union households, 62 percent say we should increase our use of solar and 61 percent say we should increase our use of wind energy.
  • Air quality, public health and energy reliability are seen as most likely to benefit from a transition to clean energy. Pennsylvania voters believe that this transition will positively impact a wide range of aspects of life in the state – from health to the economy.
  • There is strong support for providing tax incentives for wind and solar installations on brownfields, especially among union households. 70% of voters and 81% of union households are supportive of tax incentives for companies that are willing to locate wind or solar projects on brownfields — lands that have previously been disturbed or polluted through industrial activities or mining.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 72 countries and territories: 38 by direct conservation impact and 34 through partners, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

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SOURCE The Nature Conservancy

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