By Megan Poinski
Megan@MarylandReporter.com

Most Marylanders are in favor of paying $2 more a month for greener electricity produced through offshore wind, according to a new poll conducted by Gonzales Research.

Thames Estuary wind turbine

An offshore wind turbine in the Thames Estuary. Photo by phault.

The poll, which was conducted for the National Wildlife Federation and the Offshore Wind Coalition, showed that 62% of Marylanders were willing to pay the surcharge if more of their electricity came from the offshore turbines currently being discussed by the Senate Finance Committee. More than half of them – a total of 39% — feel strongly about paying more for green power.

About a third of Marylanders oppose paying more, with the vast majority of them solidly against paying more.

Four percent of Marylanders had no opinion on the issue.

The results were compiled from 805 telephone interviews with regular voters throughout the state, done between Sept. 19 and 27. The margin of error is 3.5%.

Broken down by location, a large proportion of people everywhere in the state support paying more for wind power. In Baltimore City, three out of four respondents were in favor of paying more. In the Washington, D.C. suburbs, more than two-thirds of those polled said they would take the higher bills. Baltimore suburbs had 62% supporting a higher cost for wind power, and 55% of people on the Eastern Shore and Southern Maryland were in favor of a surcharge.

The only place where a majority did not support paying more for wind power was in Western Maryland, where half of the people oppose it. However, 45% of them said they were willing to pay $2 more for wind power.

The issue showed unsurprising deep divisions on party lines. About 77% of Democrats and 55% of independents are in favor of the wind power surcharge. About 58% of Republicans oppose it.

Other findings include:

  • 75% of black respondents are in favor of paying $2 more, while 57% of white respondents feel the same way.
  •  More women – almost 68% — favor the green power surcharge. About 55% of men do.