Skip to main content
Guest homeNews home
Story
4 of 50

2024 Louisiana Survey Shows Views on Renewable Energy Expansion Split

BATON ROUGE--Researchers from the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs at the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication released the third report of the 2024 Louisiana Survey. Findings show residents support expanding fossil fuels and renewable energy resources. While most believe a shift to renewable energy will improve air and water quality, many do not believe it would have positive effects on the economy or on extreme weather events.

June 13, 2024

BATON ROUGE—Researchers from the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs at the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication released the third report of the 2024 Louisiana Survey. Findings show residents support expanding fossil fuels and renewable energy resources. While most believe a shift to renewable energy will improve air and water quality, many do not believe it would have positive effects on the economy or on extreme weather events.

The 2024 Louisiana Survey includes two distinct efforts to sample residents of the state and conduct interviews. The Louisiana Survey polled 511 adult residents from across the state via telephone about how they view their government and its policies. The survey was conducted from March 20 to April 23, 2024, and the total sample has a +/- 5.6% margin of error. Additionally, the Louisiana Survey polled 540 adult residents in a parallel survey administered online. The survey was conducted from March 25 to April 3, 2024, and the total sample has a +/- 6% margin of error. The report describes results from the traditional telephone-based survey but also presents results of the online survey.

Findings from the third of three reports indicate the following views on energy, environment and coastal issues:

  • A majority supports the expansion of offshore oil and gas drilling in coastal Louisiana (75%), but majorities also support expansion of solar panel farms (72%) and wind turbine farms (59%) in the state. When asked about which to prioritize—developing alternative energy sources, such as wind, solar and hydrogen technology or expanding exploration and production of oil, coal and natural gas—respondents are split almost evenly, 49% and 47% respectively.
  • Many are skeptical about whether a transition to renewable energy will improve their lives. About half (52%) of Louisiana residents believe a shift from fossil fuel production to renewable energy sources in the U.S. would have a positive impact on their local air and water quality. However, fewer think it will have positive effects on job opportunities in the energy sector in their community (30%), on prices for cooling and heating homes (34%) and on prices of everyday purchases (20%). Only 19% believe an energy transition would have a positive impact on extreme weather events where they live.
  • Majority of Louisiana residents think the state government is doing too little to protect air quality (55%) and to protect water quality of lakes, rivers and streams (55%). In contrast, most state residents think Louisiana is doing the right amount to protect animals and their habitats (57%). A plurality (44%) of Louisiana residents believes the state government is doing too little to mitigate the effects of climate change.
  • Many who experienced extreme weather or other disasters believe climate change played a role. Among people who said their community experienced unusual heat in the past year, 66% said climate change contributed. Among those who say their community experienced severe weather such as flooding or intense storms, 76% said climate change played a role.
  • Most Louisiana residents (57%) say coastal land loss will cause a great deal of harm to people living in coastal areas of the state. Fewer believe it will cause substantial harm to residents living across the state (32%), to the state’s economy (40%) or to the state’s infrastructure (41%). Coastal residents believe land loss will cause greater harm—not only to themselves but to the state generally—than Louisiana residents who live farther inland believe.

Michael Henderson, Ph.D., director of the Louisiana Survey, is available for interviews. Contact acharbonnet1@lsu.edu to schedule.

The Louisiana Survey has been conducted since 2003, establishing rich longitudinal measures of public opinion in Louisiana. The mission of the Louisiana Survey is to establish benchmarks as well as to capture change in residents’ assessments of state government services. The survey is further dedicated to tracking public opinion on contemporary policy issues that face the state. Each iteration of the Louisiana Survey contains core items designed to serve as barometers of public sentiment, including assessments of whether the state is heading in the right direction or wrong direction, perceptions about the most important problems facing the state, as well as evaluations of public revenue sources and spending priorities.

The survey is a project of the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs, an integral part of the Manship School of Mass Communication. The Reilly Center’s mission is to generate thoughtful programs, dialogue and research about mass communication and its many-faceted relationships with social, economic and political issues.

Read the final Louisiana Survey report on the LSU Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs website.

For more information, contact acharbonnet1@lsu.edu.

###

The Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs is partnership-driven, action-oriented and dedicated to exploring contemporary issues at the intersection of mass communication and public life. Its interdisciplinary approach draws together experts from diverse fields to advance research and dialogue. The intent is to inspire our communities to think deeply, take action, develop solutions and broaden knowledge. Underlying the Center’s endeavors is to strengthen and advance the Manship School’s national and state leadership in media and politics. Follow us on Facebook @ReillyCenter, X @ReillyCenter, Instagram @lsureillycenter and LinkedIn LSU Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs.

LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication ranks among the strongest collegiate communication programs in the country, with its robust emphasis on media and public affairs. It offers undergraduate degrees in public relations, journalism, political communication, digital advertising and pre-law, along with four graduate degree programs: Master of Mass Communication, Ph.D. in Media and Public Affairs, Certificate of Strategic Communication and a dual MMC/Law degree. Like us on Facebook @ManshipSchool, or follow us on X @ManshipSchool, Instagram @ManshipSchool and LinkedIn LSU Manship School of Mass Communication.

Latest Manship News