Pembina reacts to new federal regulations for coal-fired electricity

Aug. 19, 2011

Edmonton, AB — Tim Weis, Director of Renewable Energy and Efficiency, made the following statement in response to today's announcement by Environment Minister Peter Kent regarding federal regulations for greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired electricity:
 
"The proposed regulations are a welcome step towards putting an end to conventional coal-fired electricity. However, they must be viewed within the context of the federal government's commitments to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution and promote clean electricity generation.

"Unfortunately these regulations do not go far enough to achieve the government's commitment to generate 90 percent of Canada's electricity from zero-emitting sources by 2020, which is critical for Canada to achieve our national GHG target for 2020.

"The government needs to address pollution from all of Canada's coal fired power plants, not just future or very old units. Under these regulations about two-thirds of currently operating plants do not have to meet the standard until after 2020, and nine will operate past 2030 without constraint. Further, they are weaker than actions being taken by the governments of Ontario and British Columbia.

"Another outstanding concern is how the federal government will treat new coal-fired power plants built before July 1, 2015. Minister Kent's predecessor committed to preventing dirty coal-fired power plants from being built before these regulations come into effect on July 1, 2015.

"Maxim Power Corporation and the Alberta Utilities Commission have thumbed their noses at the federal regulations and fast tracked approval of a new plant in Alberta so that it will begin operating just before these regulations come into effect.

"Minister Kent must still clarify how he intends to address this situation, and he could very easily fulfill the government's promise by modifying the proposed regulations to apply immediately to new plants."

-30-

Contact:

Tim Weis (English / français)
Director of renewable energy and efficiency policy, Pembina Institute
Cell: 780-667-6519
Phone: 780-485-9610 ext 105

Background:

Pembina comments on proposed coal-fired power regulations

The Pembina Institute's 2010 submission to Environment Canada on the government's proposed regulatory approach to coal-fired electricity generation.

http://www.pembina.org/pub/2116

Blog: Ottawa faces crucial test in the fight against coal

http://www.pembina.org/blog/555

Media Release: Alberta Utilities Commission fails to protect public interest with final coal plant approval

Approval weakens standards for greenhouse gas pollution in Alberta and could undermine upcoming federal coal regulations

http://www.pembina.org/media-release/2250

Subscribe

Our perspectives to your inbox.