Force Flow Scales

Canada’s new GHG reporting requirements take effect under two-year cycle

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*The following regulatory news article is intended to be a preview of the legislation and not a replacement for the actual guidance from the government. For the comprehensive data and all relevant information, please visit the linked source material within the article.

Following consultation last summer, the federal government has considered stakeholder feedback and now enacted several key changes under the reporting requirements for its Greenhouse Gas Program.

Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) will now cover two calendar years (2022-2023) for the greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting required from facilities that emit 10,000 tonnes or more of GHGs in carbon dioxide equivalent units per year.

ECCC also wants to publish emission totals by gas and by source category per facility. While some companies expressed issues over confidentiality, or revealing proprietary information, the department responded that concerns “will be addressed through maintaining the ability for facilities to request confidentiality.” Requests will need to include “sufficient and explicit justification,” stated ECCC. “The intention is to increase transparency and support the use of the data in the National GHG Inventory as well as to publish more detailed facility data.”

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Additionally, there will no longer be an option for facilities to submit provincial reports in lieu of reporting federal expanded data. Allowing the provincial reports “led to incomplete and inconsistent data, as well as significant delays due to the required follow up with facilities,” ECCC stated in its consultation response. Consistency in the data reported by facilities located across jurisdictions is important for comparability and a key goal of the program expansion, the department added.

Perhaps one of the most significant changes for most facilities will be updates to the quantification methods for calculating emissions, such as methane emissions from industrial wastewater. There is also an update to one of the methodologies prescribed for calculating CO2 emissions from the combustion of natural gas.

For ammonia and hydrogen, as well as nitric acid production, there are changes to the reporting and quantification of emissions. The changes now require reporting per nitric acid train. For ammonia and hydrogen, the current reporting requirements require facilities to deduct the appropriate values for recovered quantities of CO2 from calculated gross emissions and report the amount for net emissions. The government has moved toward reporting of both parameters so that the net emissions do not have to be calculated and reported by the facility, “as this has caused some confusion in the past,” stated the consultation response. “Net emissions will instead be automatically calculated in the system using the other reported amounts.”

ECCC has also updated global warming potential values used under the GHG reporting program to reflect updated values adopted for use under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s intergovernmental AR5 panel report.

The single window system will be open for 2022 GHG reporting in March. The deadline for facilities to complete their reports to the system remains June 1.

Technical guidance for GHG reporting can be found here.

Related Professional Development Course

Attend “Air Quality Challenges and Compliance” on May 10th at the 2023 CANECT Environmental Compliance and Due Diligence Training Event to learn more about federal and provincial rules governing industrial air emissions, including GHG reporting. CANECT 2023 takes place May 9-11 in Vaughan, Ontario. Visit www.canect.net for more information.

This article appears in ES&E Magazine’s April 2023:

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