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Clear majority of Australians (61%) don’t want Nuclear Power Plants, but do want to export Uranium for ‘Peaceful purposes’ (59%)

This special telephone Morgan Poll was conducted over the last two nights, March 16/17, 2011 with an Australia-wide cross-section of 635 Australians aged 14+

In the first Morgan Poll taken after the devastating Japanese earthquake and tsunami and subsequent problems at the Fukushima nuclear power plant a clear majority of Australians (61%) do not want nuclear power plants in Australia — up 26% since September 1979. However, a majority of Australians (59%) say Australia ‘should export Uranium to other countries for peaceful purposes’ according to a special telephone Morgan Poll taken over the last two nights this week, March 16/17, 2011.

The majority of Australians (59%, down 3% since June 1991) support exporting Uranium to other countries for ‘peaceful purposes’ compared to 34% (up 3%) that don’t want to export. However only 44% support exporting Uranium to other countries for their ‘nuclear power needs’ while 50% of Australians don’t want to export for their 'nuclear power needs.'

The majority of Australians 61% (up 26% since September 1979) believe Australia should not develop nuclear power plants to supply electricity, while only 34% (down 18%) of Australians believe Australia should develop nuclear power plants to supply electricity and 5% can’t say.

If Australia were to develop nuclear power plants, a large majority (73%, up 23% since September 1979) of Australians would oppose a nuclear power plant being built in their area compared to just 12% (down 6%) that would agree to a nuclear power plant being built in their area while a further 13% (down 8%) would be anxious but not oppose it — meaning a total 25% (down 14%) would not oppose a nuclear power plant being built in their area.

A plurality of Australians (49%) object to other countries building nuclear power plants compared to only 37% that say other countries should build nuclear power plants.

Gary Morgan says:

“Australian opinions on nuclear power have changed significantly over the last 30 years with 61% (up 26% since September 1979) of Australians now saying they don’t want nuclear power plants in Australia while just 34% (down 18%) support the development of nuclear power plants.

“Despite not wanting nuclear power in Australia a majority of Australians (59%, down 3% since June 1991) support the export of Uranium for ‘peaceful purposes’ although only 44% support the export of Uranium for nuclear power needs and more Australians (49%) don’t want other countries to build nuclear power plants than those that do (37%).

“Following on from the recent disaster in Japan at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, these results show that there is no likelihood of Australians supporting nuclear power as part of Australia’s energy mix to reduce carbon emissions in the next few years.

This special telephone Morgan Poll was conducted over the last two nights, March 16/17, 2011 with an Australia-wide cross-section of 635 Australians aged 14+.

Nuclear Power in Australia

Question 1“Should Australia export Uranium to other countries for peaceful purposes?”

 

All Australians

 

Aug

77

Sep

77

Jul

78

Apr

79

Jul

82

Jul

83

Nov

83

Apr

84

Jun

91

Mar 16/17,

2011

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes, export uranium

59

57

59

54

66

66

66

65

62

59

No, don’t export uranium

28

30

27

32

25

26

23

29

31

34

Can’t say

13

13

14

14

9

8

11

6

7

7

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

 

 

Mar 16/17, 2011

Federal Voting Intention

 

14+

Electors

ALP

L-NP

Greens

Others

Can’t say

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes, export uranium

59

59

55

67

42

57

59

No, don’t export uranium

34

35

40

25

55

40

24

Can’t say

7

6

5

8

3

3

17

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

 

Question 2“Should Australia export Uranium to other countries for their Nuclear Power needs?”

 

Mar 16/17, 2011

Federal Voting Intention

 

14+

Electors

ALP

L-NP

Greens

Others

Can’t say

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes, export uranium

44

45

40

51

35

47

35

No, don’t export uranium

50

51

55

46

59

53

42

Can’t say

6

4

5

3

6

-

23

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Question 3: “Do you believe Australia should develop nuclear power plants to supply electricity to Australia?”

 

Sep

1979

Mar 16/17, 2011

Federal Voting Intention

 

14+

14+

Electors

ALP

L-NP

Greens

Others

Can’t say

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes, develop nuclear power plants

52

34

34

29

39

29

36

18

No, don’t develop nuclear power plants

35

61

61

66

54

66

64

65

Can’t say

13

5

5

5

7

5

-

17

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Question 4“If Australia were to develop nuclear power plants, would you agree to a nuclear power plant being built in your area, would you feel anxious about it but not oppose it, or oppose a nuclear power plant being built in your area?”

 

Sep

1979

Mar 16/17, 2011

Federal Voting Intention

 

14+

14+

Electors

ALP

L-NP

Greens

Others

Can’t say

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Would agree to it being built in my area

18

12

13

8

15

12

15

18

Anxious, but would not oppose it

21

13

13

15

14

11

11

8

TOTAL Would not oppose it

39

25

26

23

29

23

26

26

Would oppose it being built in my area

50

73

73

77

69

76

72

68

Can’t say

11

2

1

-

2

1

2

6

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Question 5“In your opinion should other countries build nuclear power plants or not?”

 

Mar 16/17, 2011

Federal Voting Intention

 

14+

Electors

ALP

L-NP

Greens

Others

Can’t say

 

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Yes, build nuclear plants

37

37

32

44

27

46

16

No, don’t build nuclear plants

49

49

56

41

63

42

44

Can’t say

14

14

12

15

10

12

40

TOTAL

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Margin of Error

The following table gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate

 

40%-60%

25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%

500

±4.3

±3.8

±2.6

±1.9

1,000

±3.0

±2.7

±1.9

±1.4