New Quinnipiac Poll: PA Voters Want Marcellus Drilling to Continue, and an Extraction Tax

According to a new poll by Quinnipiac University, nearly two-thirds of PA voters want Marcellus Shale gas drilling to continue. Slightly more than two-thirds of PA voters also want a drilling (or extraction) tax on gas drilling.

Pennsylvania voters support natural-gas drilling in the Marcellus shale by a 2-to-1 margin, according to a new poll that also shows strong backing for an extraction tax on energy companies.

The Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday shows that 63 percent of Pennsylvanians say the economic benefits of drilling outweigh the environmental impacts, while 30 percent express the opposite view.

Meanwhile, 69 percent said they support a drilling tax on gas companies, unchanged from an April survey. Pennsylvania remains the largest gas-drilling state without an extraction tax.

“’Drill, baby, drill,’ is the call from Pennsylvania voters, and ‘tax, baby, tax,’ is the follow-up as voters see natural gas drilling in the Marcellus shale as an economic plus more than an environmental negative,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “They also see added taxes on gas drillers as one of the few acceptable ways to help balance the budget.”*

*Times Herald-Record (Jun 19, 2011) – 63 percent of Pa. residents want gas drilling, poll finds