Engagement on federal regulations for reducing methane emissions from Canada’s municipal solid waste landfills
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) is developing new federal regulations to reduce methane emissions from municipal solid waste landfills.
When organic waste – such as food, yard waste and paper products – is disposed in landfills, it produces methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. This process occurs over many years, which means that the methane generated in landfills today is the result of past decades of organic waste disposal. By installing landfill gas management systems, methane can be recovered before it can be emitted to the atmosphere. The recovered landfill gas is either flared (burned) or can be used to create low-carbon energy. Diverting organic waste away from landfills to alternatives like composting, anaerobic digestion and recycling, and taking action to reduce the generation of organic waste (for example - reducing food waste at homes, businesses and institutions), will also lead to lower landfill methane emissions over the longer term.
The Government of Canada’s Strengthened Climate Plan – A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy committed to develop new federal regulations to increase the number of landfills that recover and flare or utilize landfill gas.
Engagement and consultation
We are engaging with stakeholders, provinces and territories, Indigenous peoples, industries, and non-governmental organizations to seek views on the design for the development of federal landfill methane regulations.
Discussion Paper: January 2022
Between January 28 and April 13th, 2022, we engaged in a consultation process on the development of new federal regulations to reduce methane emissions from municipal solid waste landfills by releasing a discussion paper and hosting an informational webinar. The paper proposed a number of objectives for consideration that would guide the elaboration of the new regulations. A “What We Heard” report was prepared to summarize the feedback received from interested parties.
Technical Working Group: September 2022
In September 2022, a Technical Working Group (TWG) was formed to support in-depth discussions on potential elements of federal regulations. The group participated in a series of meetings between October and April 2023 to share their perspectives on the technical, economic and regulatory aspects of reducing landfill methane emissions.
Proposed Regulatory Framework: April 2023
A document outlining a proposed regulatory framework was shared with stakeholders on April 18, 2023 to seek feedback on potential requirements that could be included in the new federal regulations. Interested parties are invited to provide feedback on the framework by May 19, 2023.
- Reducing Canada’s landfill methane emissions - proposed regulatory framework
- Reducing methane emissions from Canada’s municipal solid waste landfills – discussion paper
- Waste and greenhouse gases
Waste Reduction and Management Division
Environment and Climate Change Canada
351 St. Joseph Blvd., Place Vincent Massey
Gatineau QC K1A 0H3
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