Statement by Keith Brooks, Programs Director, Environmental Defence
Toronto | Traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishinaabeg, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat – We applaud Canada for introducing these methane regulations amendments and following up on the commitment to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 75 per cent by 2030. Methane is a very potent greenhouse gas, making methane reductions absolutely necessary in order to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees. Methane reductions are also relatively simple to achieve and low in cost.
These regulations will position Canada as a leader on reducing methane pollution, but Canada should be striving for virtual elimination of methane emissions. The commitment of $30 million for a Centre of Excellence on methane detection and elimination must help ensure that oil and gas companies are doing everything possible to eliminate leaks and avoid any venting and flaring. The oil and gas industry chronically underreports methane emissions. This needs to come to a stop. Strong oversight will be critical to achieving this goal.
We urge the government to finalize and bring these regulations into force as quickly as possible. Canada also needs to move forward with other regulations targeting emissions from the oil and gas sector, such as the emissions cap. Oil and gas continues to be the largest and fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions in this country. Emissions growth from oil and gas is wiping out gains made in other parts of the economy. Canada will continue to fail to meet our climate targets unless we rein in emissions from oil and gas.
We also urge Canada to be supportive of the efforts to reference a fossil fuel phase out in the final text for COP 28. Eliminating methane is essential, but winding down production is the only way to address all the emissions from oil and gas, given that the vast majority of emissions occur when the fuel is burned.
ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE (environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is a leading Canadian environmental advocacy organization that works with government, industry and individuals to defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.
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