New federal methane regulations a vital step in implementing Canada’s climate plan

Canada becomes global leader with world’s first comprehensive federal methane regulations

April 26, 2018
Media Release

Photo by Filip Maljković

EDMONTON — Duncan Kenyon, program director for responsible fossil fuels at the Pembina Institute, made the following statement in response to the Government of Canada’s methane regulations announced today:

“The Pembina Institute applauds the federal government for making Canada the first country in the world to commit to national methane regulations. While other countries have implemented similar controls, none are as comprehensive as Canada’s.

“Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas (GHG) and the primary ingredient in natural gas. With Canada’s new regulations, the country will be able to cut methane pollution by up to 45 per cent in the next eight years. This will allow the country to align with the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change.

“Canada’s oil and gas sector is the largest source of GHGs and the largest methane emitter. This vast energy waste represents millions of dollars of lost potential revenue for companies and the government while creating climate and air pollution.

“The Canadian government’s latest resolution is a tangible action on lowering methane emissions. To ensure we can meet our climate commitments, the federal government also needs to build on this positive step by expanding the oil and gas sector’s overall GHG emission reductions.

“Now it’s the provinces’ turn — specifically B.C., Alberta, and Saskatchewan — to either adopt the federal regulations or develop their own to achieve the same emission reductions.

“Alberta, as the first Canadian jurisdiction to commit to more fully regulate methane management, is at a crossroads as to whether it will lead and benefit from dramatic innovation in the oil and gas industry or not.

“Alberta’s final regulations must include an accurate, transparent, and verifiable monitoring and reporting (MMR) system. Alberta’s site-level approach is novel and unique compared to what other jurisdictions in the world are using for managing methane emissions. As such, it will be judged on whether it can balance this regulatory approach with a reporting system that  achieves the highest level of accuracy, transparency, and simplicity of site-level reporting and compliance assurance. Without a change to site-level MMR based on real-time, continuous measurement, Alberta’s approach to managing methane emissions will continue to be unverifiable and inaccurate.

“Canada’s actions are consistent with the growing level of global ambition to tackle methane emissions and conserve natural gas. Investors, energy companies, technology providers, and governments alike are taking action on methane waste to create economic and environmental opportunity. As companies, countries, and provinces step-up to reduce methane emissions they will be better positioned to compete in the low-carbon economy.”



Duncan Kenyon
Program Director, Responsible Fossil Fuels, Pembina Institute

Suzy Thompson
Communications Lead, Alberta, Pembina Institute


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