Essential tool to cap oil and gas emissions moves forward despite resistance from some provinces and industry
OTTAWA | TRADITIONAL, UNCEDED TERRITORY OF THE ALGONQUIN ANISHNAABEG PEOPLE — The David Suzuki Foundation welcomes a new framework to regulate the oil and gas sector’s emissions and calls on the federal government to move forward immediately to finalize the regulation. A strong cap is an essential tool in the climate crisis. The Foundation has concerns about the cap’s stringency, implementation timeline and loopholes for industry.
Sabaa Khan, the Foundation’s Director General for Quebec and Atlantic Canada and Climate Solutions, said:
“Polls show that the majority of people in Canada want climate action. More than 100,000 have been petitioning, rallying and calling on political leaders to cap emissions from the oil and gas sector, the largest source of greenhouse gas pollution. This cap needs to be in place as quickly as possible to achieve our climate goals and support 1.5 C, reflecting what Canadians want, expect and deserve.
“The oil and gas emissions cap can’t be undermined by the weight of legal threats and foot dragging from Alberta and Saskatchewan, and relentless oil and gas industry lobbying. International law and Canada’s legal obligations under the Paris Agreement show that Canada must stop supporting the fossil fuel industry and expansion of its production and exports.”
Foundation Senior Climate Policy Adviser Tom Green added:
“At last, government is giving itself a new tool to clamp down on the oil and gas industry’s emissions. We’ll be pushing hard to tighten the rules to ensure the cap results in actual reductions.
“We are concerned that the framework allows industry to bypass real emissions reduction through offsets and a decarbonization fund. If industry is allowed to buy its way into compliance, emissions will still go into the atmosphere and accelerate the climate crisis.
“The fossil fuel industry is largely responsible for driving the climate and affordability crises. Corporations made record-breaking profits and, rather than investing in a clean future, they’ve been giving out bonuses and buying back shares while increasing inflation and the price of fuel for the rest of us. The emissions cap is a necessary tool to hold this powerful industry accountable for its human and ecosystem health harms.”
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- The UN reported the world’s top 20 fossil fuel–producing countries, including Canada, are on track to produce more than double the amount of fossil fuels by 2030 than what the planet can handle and still limit global warming to 1.5 C (above pre-industrial levels).
- Globally, greenhouse gas emissions have reached record highs. As one of the largest oil and gas producers and greatest historical emitters, Canada has a responsibility to show leadership in eliminating fossil fuel emissions.
- This newly released legal opinion, “International obligations governing Canada’s development of new liquefied natural gas production capacity in light of the climate change emergency” examines the implications under international law of measures introduced by the governments of B.C. Canada to support gas production and transport through LNG terminals and associated infrastructure.