Most Americans see Canada as a secure, reliable and environmentally responsible oil supplier that creates jobs and other economic benefits in the United States as part of the world's largest energy trading relationship.
Some highlights of a recent poll of 2,406 Americans, conducted by Anderson Insight for the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) include:
74 per cent see Canada as the best choice among oil suppliers in terms of the "economic interests of America," compared to 14 per cent who pick Mexico, nine per cent Saudi Arabia and three per cent Venezuela.
More than 80 per cent hope their "elected representatives support more use of Canadian oil instead of oil imported from other countries" to meet U.S. demand.
82 per cent believe pipelines are a safe way to move oil to market. Seventy-two per cent believe "the U.S. should approve the Keystone XL pipeline project as soon as possible," including a strong majority of Democratic Party supporters.
89 per cent believe "Canada is one of the more environmentally responsible oil producers in the world."
"The poll shows that Americans strongly prefer Canadian oil to oil supplied by other countries," said CAPP president Dave Collyer. "On its merits - secure, reliable supply, creating jobs and economic benefits in both countries, with environmentally responsible policy and performance in place - Canadian oil is the right oil for the United States, at the right time, and from the right country."
While the International Energy Agency forecasts U.S. crude oil production could exceed Saudi Arabia production by about 2020, the U.S. continues to need crude oil imports to attain energy self-sufficiency. U.S. oil production is forecast to increase from 8.1 million barrels per day in 2011 to 9.2 million barrels per day in 2035. U.S. consumption is expected to decline from 17.6 million barrels per day in 2011 to 12.6 million barrels per day in 2035. This leaves a supply gap of about 3.4 million barrels per day that can be filled by crude oil imports from Canada.
At present, Canada supplies more oil to the U.S. than any other country. Current Canadian exports are about 2.5 million barrels per day or about 25 per cent of total U.S. oil imports, including just over one million barrels per day from the oil sands. Oil sands crude oil is similar to other heavy crude oil currently transported and refined in the U.S., from the standpoint of both chemical composition and life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions. It has been transported safely via pipelines in North America for over 30 years.
The Anderson Insight poll is available here. The fieldwork was conducted by Harris/Decima, part of Harris Interactive, one of the world's largest research firms. Data collection was conducted online using Harris Interactive's proprietary panel of Americans between October 11 and October 16, 2012.
The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) represents companies, large and small, that explore for, develop and produce natural gas and crude oil throughout Canada. CAPP's member companies produce about 90 per cent of Canada's natural gas and crude oil. CAPP's associate members provide a wide range of services that support the upstream crude oil and natural gas industry. Together CAPP's members and associate members are an important part of a national industry with revenues of about $100 billion-a-year. CAPP's mission is to enhance the economic sustainability of the Canadian upstream petroleum industry in a safe and environmentally and socially responsible manner, through constructive engagement and communication with governments, the public and stakeholders in the communities in which we operate.