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Oil sands: Environment trumps economic concerns, finds poll

Even in a recession, the majority of Canadians believe that minimizing the environmental impacts of the oil sands is more important than maximizing profits from them, according to a recent Nanos poll.

The poll randomly sampled 1,002 Canadians. Fifty-nine percent thought minimizing environmental impacts was very important, versus 35 per cent who thought maximizing economic prosperity was very important. These results were fairly consistent across regions.

There was greater disparity on a question about the impact of the oil sands on Canada's international reputation. Interestingly, 36 per cent of western Canadians thought the oil sands had a negative impact. Only Quebec had a greater percentage -- 46 per cent -- of people who felt the same.

Atlantic Canada had the greatest number of people, 40 per cent, who felt the oil sands had a positive impact on Canada's reputation abroad.

The results of the poll can be found here.

Colleen Kimmett reports for The Hook

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