Emerging approaches for reducing landfill methane emissions

The application submission period for funding is now closed.


The program will fund single or multi-year projects for pilot tests of emerging monitoring technologies to optimize methane recovery at landfills. The ultimate goal of the program is to mobilize Canada's waste sector to prevent and reduce methane emissions from Canadian landfills.


The federal government is undertaking efforts to reduce methane emissions from Canada’s municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills. As part of this effort, Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) is supporting emerging and innovative technologies for optimizing methane mitigation at landfills.

Methane emissions from landfills are known to vary over time in response to factors including barometric pressure and operational practices. Recent studies in the United States have highlighted the importance of detecting and repairing leaks in cover systems to help reduce emissions.

Conventional operation of a landfill gas (LFG) recovery system involves manual wellfield monitoring and adjustment carried out at a specified interval. There has recently been increased interest in automated collection systems to increase LFG recovery. These systems can remotely and continuously measure numerous parameters and automatically adjust the vacuum at each extraction well.

There is also growing interest in emerging technologies that permit continuous or drone-based monitoring of methane emissions. These include monitoring technologies originally developed to support leak detection and repair programs at oil and gas facilities. They can help to more quickly:

Continuous and drone-based monitoring technologies show promise for landfill applications, but further experience is needed to inform their use. Existing approaches for identifying methane leaks at landfills, by measuring surface methane concentrations, are labour intensive and conducted relatively infrequently.

Continuous monitoring technologies for landfill methane emissions and for wellfield management present an opportunity to increase LFG recovery. This will ultimately help to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. However, to date, these technologies have had minimal implementation or testing in Canada. ECCC would like to encourage additional testing and, if appropriate, further adoption of these systems at Canadian landfills.

The goal of the current funding is to support pilot scale implementation of emerging monitoring and automation systems including:

Through this program, these systems will be installed and tested at existing open and closed Canadian landfills. Information will be gathered on the systems’ technical and economic effectiveness in the Canadian context and barriers to their adoption. The program will also provide relevant local examples of the technology implementation to interested landfill operators. If appropriate, further use of the systems can be promoted in order to ultimately contribute to the Government of Canada’s methane reduction commitments.

Expected results

The expected results of this program are:

Eligible applicants

Applicants must fall under one of the following categories:

Geographic location

All projects must take place in Canada. We will strive for geographical representation across Canada.

Eligible projects

Projects will consist of the installation, operation and evaluation of continuous monitoring technologies for landfill methane. Eligible technologies include:

Eligible projects will also satisfy the following criteria:

The eligible recipient would ideally have technical expertise to conduct studies. If a recipient intends to hire a consultant, they must provide details on the consultant’s background and expertise in the application.

The application must identify all contributions and expenditures for the project, including any in-kind contributions or other funding sources.

Range of funding

Projects are eligible for funding up to a maximum of $200,000 per project (for its duration). Projects must be completed by March 31, 2025. A total of $750,000 in funding is available between April 2023 and March 31, 2025.

There is no matching funding requirement, but applicants are encouraged to leverage additional funds and/or in-kind contributions from other interested project partners. Applicants are required to declare any and all sources of funding for the project.

For all expenses, only those deemed to be a reasonable share for completing the project shall be considered eligible.

Eligible expenses may include reasonable and properly itemized costs for:

Frequently asked questions

What is the deadline for submission of applications?

The application deadline for initial allocation of funding is April 14, 2023. Applications can be submitted after this date if the process remains open. Information on the status of the funding program will be communicated on this webpage. Alternatively, you can contact ges-dechets-ghg-waste@ec.gc.ca to confirm whether applications are still being accepted. The Program will evaluate and approve projects as they are received and will then negotiate and sign contribution agreements. Note that regardless of when the application is submitted and approved, the project must be completed by March 31, 2025.

Can I submit more than one application?

Yes, interested applicants may submit multiple applications for different projects; however, there is no guarantee that one or all of the applications will be approved.

What is the evaluation process?

Each proposal undergoes a thorough evaluation to confirm that the project satisfies the eligibility requirements and program objectives. The evaluation will also review the applicant’s plan to meet the reporting requirements and expected results. ECCC may contact applicants for additional information or clarification on their proposal.

Applicants can expect to hear about the status of their applications within 1 month after submission of the application through the Grants and Contributions Enterprise Management System (GCEMS). Please note that successful applicants will need to negotiate and sign a funding agreement before any funds are dispersed or any work commences.

Points to consider

Reporting requirements

The Contribution Agreement, between the recipient and ECCC, will specify project reporting deadlines and will include the required forms. Recipients must provide regular progress reports, annual reports (for multi-year projects) and a final report upon the completion of the project. The final report will include:

Related link

Contact us

Environment and Climate Change Canada

Waste Reduction and Management Division
351 Saint-Joseph Boulevard
Gatineau QC  K1A 0H3
Email: ges-dechets-ghg-waste@ec.gc.ca

Grants and Contributions Enterprise Management System (GCEMS)
For GCEMS technical assistance: sgesc-gcems-sgesc-gcems@ec.gc.ca

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