Public support for fracking appears at an all time low, according to the latest in a series of government-commissioned opinion polls.
The former department of energy and climate change (Decc) launched the energy and climate change public attitudes tracker in March 2012. It asks questions around energy security, support for different types of generation and fuel types as well as questions about smart meters and energy efficiency.
While half (48%) of those surveyed appeared neutral on shale gas or fracking, of those who offered an opinion, more people were opposed to fracking (36%) than supported it (13%), according to the data.
The report states: ‘Support for fracking is at its lowest point since the tracker began asking respondents about their opinions on the subject’ in December 2013.
Those in favour of fracking favoured using all available energy resources, increased energy security and job creation. Those against cited environmental and safety concerns.
Meanwhile, despite climbing the political agenda, concern over paying for energy bills remains at its lowest since the survey began.
Support for renewables remains high with 82% expressing support and 3% opposed. Support for nuclear (33% in favour versus 25% opposed) was inline with recent surveys.
The survey also found poorer households had the highest penetration of smart meters. According to the sample of 2,105 face-to-face, in-home interviews, some 27% said they had a smart meter, which contrasts to recent government figures suggesting the rollout was around 15% complete.
See the survey data here.