More than half of people (52%) questioned for a poll commissioned by Newsnight believe it is wrong for the government to consider nuclear power as an energy source for the future.
The results of the ICM poll will be unveiled on the flagship BBC TWO current affairs programme tonight at 10.30pm in a special nuclear debate.
The poll asked whether respondents thought it would be right or wrong for the government to consider nuclear power as an energy source for the future. The results show that 39% agreed it was right. A total of 9% responded that they did not know.
The survey also asked which sources of energy respondents believed was the most feasible way of meeting the UK's future energy demands while reducing Carbon Dioxide emissions.
Jeremy Paxman will chair the special Newsnight debate
A total of 57% of those polled chose renewable sources such as wave, tidal, solar and wind power.
The poll found that 21% of those questioned believed nuclear power stations were the most feasible compared to 12% for coal/gas power stations. Again 9% said they did not know.
The debate on nuclear power will take up two-thirds of tonight's programme and will be presented by Jeremy Paxman from the Science Museum.
It comes on the day the Royal Society examines Britain's energy policy and any actions that need to be taken to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, on the eve of the Queen's Speech.
London's Science Museum will host the debate
The debate will include a panel of leading politicians, policy makers, nuclear industry experts, academics and environmentalists including Malcolm Wicks, Minister of State for Energy; David Willetts, Shadow Secretary of State for Productivity, Energy and Industry; and Andrew Stunell MP.
The Newsnight Debate will be shown on BBC2 on Monday 16 May 2005.