Guest View: Canada following B.C.’s lead on clean fuel standard

Between 2010 and 2015, the use of renewable fuels resulted in the avoidance of an average of 904,000 tonnes of GHG emissions per year

The following is an opinion-editorial written by B.C. Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett:

Last week, the federal government began a conversation with Canadians about a national clean-fuel standard that will help Canadians meet our national greenhouse gas emissions commitments. I’m guessing 99 per cent of everyone reading this will not know that the first jurisdiction in Canada to implement a clean fuel standard is us, you and I, British Columbia.

The policy is simple but extremely effective. Fuel suppliers in B.C. are required to reduce the carbon intensity of transportation fuels. We call our provincial policy the Renewable and Low Carbon Fuel Requirements Regulation, and this regulation that no one has heard about is currently B.C.’s largest single emissions-reduction initiative. It’s thanks to this regulation, implemented in 2010, that the gasoline and diesel fuel you pump at the gas station contains renewable content like ethanol and biodiesel.

Between 2010 and 2015, the use of renewable and low-carbon fuels resulted in the avoidance of an average of 904,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year – the equivalent of removing more than 190,000 cars from the road.

While other provinces (and the federal government) have introduced renewable content requirements, B.C.’s system goes beyond just requiring renewable content in gas and diesel fuel by recognizing the carbon intensity of producing, processing, transporting and using both petroleum-based fuels and biofuels. In fact, B.C. is the only province in Canada (and with California and Oregon, one of only three jurisdictions in North America) with a clean-fuel standard that requires the reduction of the carbon intensity of transportation fuels based on a complete lifecycle analysis.

Our low-carbon fuel requirement currently calls for a 10 per cent reduction in the “well-to-wheels” carbon intensity of transportation fuels by 2020, and under B.C.’s new Climate Leadership Plan we’re increasing the target to 15 per cent by 2030.

When we require a 10 per cent reduction in 2020, the quantity of avoided greenhouse gas emissions is expected to be 2.7 million tonnes annually, and at 15 per cent in 2030, the reductions would be over four million tonnes per year.

The low-carbon fuel requirement is a market-based approach to achieving emission reductions. It uses a lifecycle assessment to determine the overall carbon intensity of transportation fuels. This includes factors associated with the production and consumption of each fuel – for example, the exploration and production of fossil fuels, production of crops for biofuels, and the refining, transport and end-use of the fuel are all accounted for.

One of the key features of the low-carbon requirement is its flexibility. Fuel suppliers can reduce the carbon intensity of their fuels and meet the low-carbon requirement in a number of ways, including improving agricultural practices for growing biofuel crops and supplying more low-carbon fuels such as propane, natural gas, electricity or hydrogen, or renewable fuels such as biodiesel or ethanol. In addition, fuel suppliers can acquire low-carbon fuel credits from another supplier who supplies low-carbon fuels, or create compliance credits by undertaking actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the greater use of low-carbon fuels.

Our government supports Canada’s wise decision to follow British Columbia’s lead and consider implementing a clean fuel standard throughout the country.

We look forward to sharing our expertise and experience in future pan- Canadian discussions on a national standard.

 

Just Posted

UPDATE: Missing Prince Rupert resident found safe

Courtney Nicole Dudoward has been located, according to her family

Ava Clarance vaults into Rupert gymnastics history

Prince Rupert Gymnastics Association sending first ever athlete to B.C. Winter Games

A new vision unveiled for Prince Rupert

City, DP World, PRPA, Ridley Terminals, Community Futures, Raymont Logisitics unveil Rupert 2030

Prince Rupert Fire Rescue responds to gas leak on Third Ave.

Prince Rupert Fire Rescue was dispatched to a carbon monoxide alarm

LETTER: Closed door is best deterrent in Port Edward

Re: Council decision Nov. 26 to reject rezoning of adjacent properties to Kinnikinnick campground

Only one week left for Santa Shops Here grand prize

Inland Air harbour tour for four up for grabs

WEB POLL: Did the Redesign Rupert 2030 plan meet your expectations?

Prince Rupert got a glimpse of the 2030 vision this week as Redesign Rupert partners unveiled plans

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Most Read