Regulatory framework, barriers and public funding issues face new carbon capture working groupPembina Institute reacts to Alberta-Canada CCUS working group announcement

March 9, 2021

Stack from Shell Quest CCS project under construction

Shell Quest CCS project under construction in Alberta. Photo: Pembina Institute

CALGARY - Chris Severson-Baker, Alberta Director at the Pembina Institute, made the following statement in response to the Alberta government’s announcement about the Alberta-Canada CCUS Working Group:

"Carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) will likely play an important role in Canada’s decarbonization pathways to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, and the rise in the price on carbon emissions will make many applications of CCUS economically viable in Alberta by 2030. At the same time, there remains a role for both levels of government in, among other things:

  • assessing the various pathways to decarbonization for Alberta and the potential role of CCUS and other options in those pathways;
  • completing the establishment of a credible regulatory framework to ensure that all carbon captured is permanently sequestered;
  • addressing non-financial barriers that would prevent the rapid implementation of CCUS; and
  • assessing if public funding for new industrial applications of CCUS is needed given the 2030 carbon price and the emergence of other market-based incentives.

"Public investments in CCUS must be weighed against all other opportunities to drive emissions reductions in Canada on a tonne per dollar invested basis. Preference for public funding should be given to opportunities more likely to result in full decarbonization of Canada’s economy by 2050 in a manner that is consistent with limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius while generating significant economic opportunity and jobs per dollar invested for workers and communities.

"We are pleased to see collaboration between Alberta and the federal government on this panel. To truly capitalize on opportunities for co-operation, emissions reduction, and decarbonization between the two levels of government, Alberta must implement a comprehensive, economy-wide, greenhouse gas emissions reduction plan that is tied to a commitment to achieve Canada’s 2030 and net-zero by 2050 targets, and embraces important supporting policies like carbon pricing and the Clean Fuel Standard.

"An Alberta net-zero commitment is also a necessary precondition for investors. Alberta companies must be able to secure tens of billions of dollars to finance renewable energy and decarbonization projects. This requires a stable and predictable climate policy environment and an end to the kind of conflict over progress on climate policy that has prevented Canada from achieving its climate change commitments in the past."



Jill Sawyer
Senior Communications Lead - Alberta, Pembina Institute


Report: The oilsands in a carbon-constrained Canada
Blog: For Canadian oil companies, the time to decarbonize is running out
Blog: Drilling down on oil demand: Canada needs a net-zero scenario to navigate the energy transition
Blog: How Canadian companies can get net-zero right

About the Pembina Institute

The Pembina Institute is a non-profit think-tank that advocates for strong, effective policies to support Canada’s clean energy transition. We have offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Toronto. Learn more:


Our perspectives to your inbox.

The Pembina Institute endeavors to maintain your privacy and protect the confidentiality of any personal information that you may give us. We do not sell, share, rent or otherwise disseminate personal information. Read our full privacy policy.