Feds Announce Plans for National Low-Carbon Fuel Standard

The Canadian government recently announced plans to develop a clean fuel standard that would require reductions in the carbon footprints of fuels supplied in Canada.

The standard will encourage the use of cleaner fuels in a variety of industries, including home and building construction, energy and transportation.

The overall goal of the standard would be to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 30 megatonnes by 2030 — the equivalent of removing 7 million vehicles from the road for one year.

According to the government, such a clean fuel standard would be flexible and would promote clean technology and impact a variety of fuels, including liquid, gaseous and solid.

In addition, cleaner alternatives such as electric, biogas, hydrogen and renewable fuels would be encouraged.

The government has said that the fuel standard will focus on emissions reductions rather than prescribe specific low-carbon fuels or technology.

The standard would be performance-based and would set requirements that help reduce the lifecycle carbon intensities of fuels supplied in a given year.

The government has said it will work with provinces, territories and stakeholders to hone the standard and to provide flexibility to fuel suppliers.

In particular, the goal is that the standard would include provisions that take into account regional differences, similar to those under existing renewable fuel regulations.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) has said that, in order for GHG legislation to work, Environment Canada must work closely with Transport Canada to establish testing protocols for emission reduction technology and take into account unique industry challenges.

Environment and Climate Change Canada anticipate publication of proposed regulations in Canada by mid-2018.

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