Poll: Most Americans Worry About U.S. Oil Consumption

Seventy-six percent of Americans worry about the country’s lack of progress in developing better ways to use energy efficiently and develop renewable sources, according to a new poll released today by The University of Texas at Austin.

Of the more than 3,400 consumers surveyed, 84 percent also said they were worried about U.S. consumption of oil from foreign sources.

Participants were asked to rate their satisfaction and dissatisfaction with the job that 26 different organizations, corporations, institutions and government bodies were doing to address energy issues. The public overall was dissatisfied with how government and big business are addressing energy issues. Congress — with ratings of 8 percent satisfied, 71 percent dissatisfied — ranked dead last.

According to results, the majority of Americans care about energy issues: 68 percent are concerned about the energy efficiency of their homes and 60 percent about global energy issues.

The poll also found that a majority of Americans believe that the nation’s energy situation is going to get much worse over the next 25 years. Encouragingly, 57 percent of Americans expect that they will make changes in their behavior and adopt new technologies to address these issues.

Survey results also implied that now is the time for for the government to start investing in smart energy companies that are ready to bring  their products to market. Younger respondents, in particular, were more likely to say they expected to use energy-saving alternatives in the next five years, including smart meters, solar panels, and hybrid or electric vehicles.

Perhaps unsurprisingly in a tough economy, consumers were less concerned about energy’s impact on the environment than on their wallets. But they ranked economic growth (37 percent) only slightly more important than preventing harm to the environment (33 percent), suggesting support for a balanced approach to energy policy.

“This survey shows that the public craves leadership on energy issues. Through our analysis of the data, we hope to add an authoritative voice to public debate on energy issues. The Energy Poll fits well with our commitment as a world-class research university to change the world for the better,” said Bill Powers, president of UT Austin.

The inaugural University of Texas at Austin Energy Poll was developed by the McCombs School of Business’ Energy Management and Innovation Center. To be conducted biannually, the online poll rates leadership on energy issues, measures consumers’ energy priorities, and tracks knowledge and energy consumption behaviors.

Related Reading:

Global Oil Consumption In 2010 Up To “All-Time” High

Animals Footing The Bill Of Big Oil And Coal

Despite Deficit, Senate Votes To Continue Oil Subsidies

Image Credit: Flickr – snowlepard


William C
William C11 months ago

Thank you.

W. C
W. C11 months ago


Duane B.
.4 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

richa blue akasha
Raiin Blue5 years ago

good to know..America is the biggest oil consumer on this planet i read recently :[

lis Gunn
lis Gunn6 years ago

It's not just Americans who are worried about US reliance and consumption of fossil fuels. The rest of the world is also worried cause your politicians (and big oil) are so hell bent on maintaining the supplies into the future. Not only do they invade other countries or assist in the overthrow of those who would thwart oil supplies, but they are busy fouling up their beautiful country in search of more (shale drilling and fracking coal seam gas). Of course the autocratic Saudi Arabia is safe with the US as an ally and Burma has no oil so it too is safe. Sorry to sound so cynical but your political leaders do not have the intestinal fortitude or else are too constipated to do anything about their addiction to oil.

Caitlin Fowler
Caitlin F6 years ago

Interesting, thanks for posting.

Robert O.
Robert O6 years ago

I know it worries me a great deal. Thanks Beth.

Dave C.
David C6 years ago

wonderful that so many willing to make changes or at least consider, but just another poll dissmissed by the repuglicons in congress....must be too scientific....will keep trying to support alternative energy options through other means possible....

Faith Billingham
Faith Billingham6 years ago

great article, thanks :)

Faith Billingham
Faith Billingham6 years ago

great article, thanks :)