Proposed regulations to reduce methane emissions in the oil and gas sector

Backgrounder

Methane is the main component of natural gas that is used to heat homes and power factories. It is also a greenhouse gas with a global warming potential 25 times greater than carbon dioxide. The oil and gas sector accounts for 26 percent of Canada’s total greenhouse gas emissions, and it is Canada’s largest industrial emitter of methane.

Canada proposed methane regulations that will require industry to conserve valuable natural gas by regularly checking and fixing gas leaks and adopting new practices that prevent the gas from being vented into the air during oil and gas production. These requirements will apply to oil and gas facilities that are responsible for the extraction, production, processing, and transportation of crude oil and natural gas. This includes oil and gas wells and batteries, natural gas processing plants, compressor stations, and supporting pipelines.

Between 2018 and 2035, the total greenhouse gas emission reductions from the proposed regulations are estimated to be approximately 282 megatonnes. By reducing methane emissions, Canada will reduce future global economic impacts caused by climate change by approximately $13.4 billion.

Consultations

To help inform the development of the proposed regulations, Environment and Climate Change Canada held over 150 hours of consultations, last year, with provinces, territories, industry, civil society organizations, and associations representing Indigenous peoples.

Next steps

Environment and Climate Change Canada will proceed to hold a series of information sessions, workshops, and meetings with many of the same groups that were previously consulted to provide information on the proposed regulations, seek feedback, and answer questions. This input will help to inform the final regulations. Any inquiries can be sent to ec.methane-methane.ec@canada.ca.


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