B.C.’s new Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act (GGIRCA) comes into force on Jan. 1, 2016, ensuring LNG facilities in B.C. will have an emissions cap making them the cleanest in the world.
The new act combines several pieces of existing greenhouse gas legislation into a single legislative framework. It includes the ability to set a greenhouse gas emissions intensity benchmark for regulated industries, including LNG facilities and enables the benchmark to be met through flexible options, such as purchasing offsets or paying a set price per tonne of greenhouse gas emissions that would be dedicated to a technology fund. This will uphold the Province’s commitment to having the cleanest liquefied natural gas facilities in the world.
Three regulations necessary to implement the Act are in effect Jan. 1, 2016:
- the Greenhouse Gas Emission Reporting Regulation;
- the Greenhouse Gas Emission Administrative Penalties and Appeals Regulation; and
- the Greenhouse Gas Emission Control Regulation.
The Greenhouse Gas Emission Reporting Regulation replaces the existing industrial Reporting Regulation and adds compliance reporting requirements, including specific requirements for LNG operations. Industrial operations will continue to report GHG emissions as they have since 2010.
The Greenhouse Gas Emission Administrative Penalties and Appeals Regulation establishes the process for when, how much, and under what conditions administrative penalties may be levied for non-compliance with the act or regulations.
The Greenhouse Gas Emission Control Regulation establishes the BC Carbon Registry and sets criteria for developing emission offsets issued by the Province. The regulation also establishes the price ($25) for funded units issued under the act that would go towards a technology fund. Regulated operations, such as LNG operations, will purchase offsets from the market or funded units from government to meet emission limits.
Funded unit revenue that goes to a technology fund will also support the development of clean technologies with significant potential to reduce B.C.’s emissions over the long-term. This supports the Province’s new #BCTECH Strategy to spur adoption of cleantech and achieve world-leading performance in greenhouse gas intensity.
Mary Polak, Minister of Environment –
“LNG will play a significant role in the global climate solution as countries look for a cleaner, transition fuel to replace dirty fossil fuels like coal and gradually move towards 100% renewables. When nations choose LNG from British Columbia they will do so knowing ours is produced in the most environmentally conscious way. No other LNG-producing jurisdiction on the planet meets our high standards. The export of B.C. LNG is truly both an economic and an environmental opportunity for the province.”
- In transitioning to the new act, the Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Cap and Trade) Act will be repealed as very similar provisions are enabled under the Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act for reporting, offsets, tracking and compliance. Rather than a cap, emissions limits are proposed by sector.
- Portions of the Environmental Management Act setting up emissions standards for the electricity sector will be repealed as GGIRCA streamlines the ability to create emissions standards for industry into a single act.
- Also, the offset provisions for carbon neutral government under the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act and the Emission Offset Regulation will be repealed so there is a single standard for B.C.’s offsets.
For more information about GGIRCA, and other climate legislation, visit: www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/climate-change/policy-legislation-programs/legislation-regulations
Earlier this year, British Columbians and stakeholders had a chance to participate in the development of the three GGIRCA regulations through public intentions papers. View the summary report here: http://ow.ly/VRyPO
Learn more about B.C.’s climate actions at: www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/climate-change
Learn more about the #BCTECH Strategy at: www.bctechstrategy.ca
Watch for a second round of public consultation in the development of the next phase of B.C.’s Climate Leadership Plan in January 2016. Learn more about the plan here: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/climateleadership