The majority of Americans oppose drilling for oil on federally protected lands, a new poll showed Friday.

The results is the first time most American are against the idea since the Gallup polling company began asking about the subject.

The report comes the same day President Donald Trump approved plans for the Keystone XL Pipeline that has been heavily criticized by environmental groups and Native American tribes.

If constructed, the pipeline would stretch 1,450 kilometers (900 miles) from Canada to the Texas coast and carry 830,000 barrels of crude oil per day.

Of the 1,000 people surveyed earlier this month, 53 percent opposed opening federal lands for oil exploration. Five years ago, 65 percent of Americans supported the idea.

Instead of a reinvigorated commitment to environmental sustainability, however, Gallup believes the shift is due to declining fuel prices.

“Declining gas prices are likely a key reason Americans' concerns about energy have waned in recent years,” Gallup pollster Jeffrey Jones wrote in a statement.

Five years ago, the average price for a gallon of gas in the U.S. was $3.91, according to figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Last month, the average price was $2.42.

Trump’s decision Friday reversed one made by his predecessor, former President Barack Obama.

While the Republican Party championed the Keystone XL Pipeline as a crucial jobs creator, opponents raised questions about potential spills, ecological effects and whether Republican enthusiasm about new employment was inflated.

Obama killed the pipeline’s plans in 2015, but they were revived two years later.

"It's gonna be an incredible pipeline — the greatest technology known to man or woman,” Trump said in the Oval Office after approving the plan. “And frankly, we're very proud of it."

Pouring over survey results, Gallup suggested Americans may not be on board with Trump’s friendliness with the oil industry.

Responses to "Most Americans Oppose Oil And Gas Drilling On Federal Lands"

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