Public awareness and opinion on CCS in the province of Québec, Canada



CO2 capture and geological storage (CCS) is a major topic of interest in Canada, where many CCS projects are either underway or in the planning stage. In order to get information about public acceptance for a potential CCS pilot project in the province of Québec, two identical Internet-based public awareness and opinion surveys were conducted: one in 2010 and one in 2011. Results of the two surveys show that respondents are not really aware of what climate change is and that they know almost nothing about CCS. In 2010, respondents did not generally reject CCS technology or a potential pilot project in their region. In fact, they were slightly favorable toward such a project. In 2011, the picture changed slightly as an intense debate on shale gas exploration had taken place in the province at the end of 2010. It appears that respondents were less likely to be favorable toward the use of CCS. It is not possible to specifically link the increase of respondents against CCS or a potential pilot project and the increase of security concerns to the debate regarding shale gas exploration. However, the social context in a region where controversial shale gas activities are underway may not be the best for a potential CCS pilot project to become accepted by the local community. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd