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Oil and gas sector warns emissions cap could lead to production curtailments

A flare stack burns off excess gas at a processing facility near Crossfield, Alta., Tuesday, June 13, 2023. Canada's oil and gas industry says the emissions cap framework announced Thursday by Ottawa could result in significant production curtailments by companies. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Canada’s oil and gas industry says the emissions cap framework announced by Ottawa could result in significant production curtailments by companies.

The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) says the federal government’s plan to have the oil and gas sector cut its emissions by more than a third below 2019 levels by 2030 is problematic.

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It says the industry is working to reduce its emissions, but Ottawa’s targeted time frame is too ambitious.

It says many of the technologies oil and gas producers hope to use to decarbonize their operations are still in the early stages of development.

The federal government says its emission cap will take the form of a cap-and-trade system, meaning companies would be able to buy offset credits or contribute to a decarbonization fund that would lower their emissions-cutting requirement to just 20 to 23 per cent.

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CAPP says Ottawa’s plan risks triggering “unforeseen socioeconomic consequences,” including higher energy prices for Canadians.

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