Ontario has released a proposed new statute called the
Climate Change Mitigation and Low-Carbon Economy Act, 2016
(the Climate Change Act). The Ontario government also released the
Cap and Trade Regulatory Proposal (the Cap and Trade
Regulation) and a Revised Guideline for Greenhouse Gas
Emissions Reporting (the Reporting Regulation).
Comments on the Climate Change Act may be submitted to the
government until March 25, 2016. Comments on the Cap and Trade
Regulation and the Reporting Regulation may be submitted until
April 10, 2016.
Ontario is developing new climate change regulation as part of a
process to join the Western Climate Initiative. The Western Climate
Initiative includes Quebec and California among its member
The Cap and Trade Regulation includes policy positions regarding
a number of key cap and trade typical program elements,
Greenhouse gases (GHG) emission caps
Mandatory and voluntary market participants registration
processes. The regime is expected to cover approximately 150
emitters including large industrial facilities, petroleum product
distributors and electricity importers
The initial compliance period will begin January 1, 2017, and
end on December 31, 2020, with successive three-year compliance
periods thereafter. Regulated emitters must retire emission credits
equal to their actual emissions during a compliance period
Certain emitters are to receive free emission allowances,
particularly those emitters whose businesses are carbon-intensive
Future credit linkages with Quebec and California will be
designed so as to allow emission credits to be traded across the
Compliance emitters will likely be able to use qualifying
offsets for up to eight percent of their compliance obligations
which keeps Ontario in line with Quebec and California
Participants may apply for early action credits for the period
between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2015
It is expected the proposed regime will generate approximately
$1.8-1.9 billion per year in new revenue which will be paid into a
Greenhouse Gas Reduction Account which, in turn, will be used for
GHG reduction initiatives.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Ontario's Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change continues to roll out its Climate Change Action Plan with its proposed GHG guide for projects that are subject to the province's Environmental Assessment Act.
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