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ERA's Environmental Compliance Management Blog

Important Canadian GHG Emissions Reporting Update

Posted by Alex Chamberlain

Alex Chamberlain is a writer for ERA Environmental Management Solutions.

 

Canadian GHG Emission reporting updateToday we bring you an important notice from the Canadian Department of the Environment that will affect Canadian businesses that are required to report their greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting.

The notice in its entirety can be read here (from the Canadian Gazette).

The following information applies to the 2012 GHG reporting year. While you should read the entire notice carefully, here are a few of the most important highlights:

Who is Affected?

According to the Department of the Environment, the following business and facilties are affected by these GHG regulations. We've highlighted a few of the more important elements:

"1. (1) All persons who operate a facility that emits 50 000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (50 kt CO2 eq.) or more (the “reporting threshold”) of the GHGs listed in Table 1 of Schedule 1 in the 2012 calendar year shall be subject to the reporting requirements set out in this notice.

(2) If the person who operates a facility as described in this Schedule changes during the 2012 calendar year, the person who operates the facility, as of December 31, 2012, shall report for the entire 2012 calendar year by June 1, 2013. If operations at a facility are terminated during the 2012 calendar year, the last operator of that facility is required to report for the portion of the 2012 calendar year during which the facility was in operation by June 1, 2013.

2. (1) A person subject to this notice shall determine whether a facility meets or exceeds the reporting threshold described in section 1, using the following equation and the criteria set out in subsections (2) to (4) of this section:

total emissions equation formula

where

E = total emissions of a particular gas or gas species from the facility in the calendar year 2012, expressed in tonnes

GWP = global warming potential of the same gas or gas species

i = each emission source

(2) A person subject to this notice shall quantify emissions of each HFC and PFC substance on Schedule 1 separately and then multiply the result for each of these substances by the global warming potential set out in Table 1 of Schedule 1 for that substance.

(3) For the purposes of subsection (1), a person subject to this notice shall not include CO2 emissions from combustion of biomass in the determination of total emissions. The person shall quantify and report CO2 emissions from combustion of biomass as part of the greenhouse gas emissions information that is required in paragraph 2(e) of Schedule 4 of this Notice.

(4) For the purpose of subsection (1), a person subject to this notice shall not include CO2 emissions from biomass decomposition in the determination of total emissions.

3. A person submitting a report in respect of a facility that meets the emission criteria above shall use the applicable quantification methods for estimating emissions set out in Section E of the Updated UNFCCC [United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change] reporting guidelines on annual inventories following incorporation of the provisions of decision 14/CP.11 contained in FCCC/SBSTA/2006/9." 

Note that biomass is defined as all plants and plant materials, animal waste, wood products, and charcoal including organic matter in industrial waste, bio-alcohols, and oils. Confusion about separately calculating biomass GHG emissions is often creates difficulty for GHG reports. You can read our advice on the matter here.

Which GHG Emissions are Affected?

Here is a lost of all GHGs that are subject to mandatory reporting:

  1. Carbon dioxide
  2. Methane
  3. Nitrous Oxide
  4. Sulphur hexafluoride

5. Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)

  • HFC-23
  • HFC-32
  • HFC-41
  • HFC-43-10mee
  • HFC-125
  • HFC-134
  • HFC-134a
  • HFC-143
  • HFC-143a
  • HFC-152a
  • HFC-227ea
  • HFC-236fa
  • HFC-245ca

6. Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)

  • Perfluoromethane
  • Perfluoroethane
  • Perfluoropropane
  • Perfluorobutane
  • Perfluorocyclobutane
  • Perfluoropentane
  • Perfluorohexane

What Are the Deadlines?

All of the data required in the GHG report for the 2012 period must be submitted to the Minister of the Environment by June 1, 2013.

If your business is not required to submit a GHG emissions report for 2012, you must also notify the Minister of the Environmental by June 1, 2012.

Is Your Data Secure & Confidential?

All data submitted to the Department of the Environment for GHG reporting is assumed to be public information which shall be published and made available to the public online.

If any of your data is confidential or a trade secret, you may make a written request to the Minister of the Environment along with your GHG report. Make sure that your submission is on or before the reporting deadline. All confidentiality equests made after the deadline cannot be honoured.

Need to Learn More About GHG Emissions Reporting?

ERA has written several educational article about GHG emissions reporting across Canada as well as in the U.S. Here's a few of our most popular ones:

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Alex Chamberlain

About the Author: Alex Chamberlain is a writer and blogger who regularly contributes to ERA Environmental Management Solutions' blog. You can find Alex on Google+LinkedIn & ERA's Environmental Compliance Blog

 

Topics: Emissions Management