The poll asks two questions regarding 1) whether environmental protection or energy production should be given higher priority; and 2) whether environmental protection or economic development should be given higher priority.
Gallup and the news announce that Americans favor environmental protection over energy production for the first time in the ten-year history of these poll questions. The overall finding:
In March, by 50% to 43%, Americans said it was more important to develop U.S. energy supplies than to protect the environment, continuing a trend in the direction of energy production seen since 2007. Now, the majority favor environmental protection, by 55% to 39% -- the second-largest percentage (behind the 58% in 2007) favoring the environment in the 10-year history of the question.That's just really great. Except that it perpetuates the conceptual framework that dichotomizes environment on one side and energy and economy on the other. That is precisely the dualism we need to overcome and that is what the most innovative work on new technologies, new methods, and new policies is doing. This kind of conceptual framework in the Gallup poll is a restraint and it really doesn't help to ask Americans to keep thinking of the energy-environment-economy relationship in those terms.