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BC: Bill 34 – The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Amendment Act, 2018

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The British Columbia government has introduced Bill 34, an Act to amend the original Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act, to update the province’s greenhouse gas reduction targets. Bill 34, which will be known as the Climate Change Accountability Act, will guide all efforts in GHG reduction programs and is designed to meet a new set of emissions objectives of a 40 per cent reduction in GHG emissions by 2030 (from the 2007 benchmark) and a 60 per cent reduction by 2040.
 
Many of the new initiatives included in Bill 34 are the result of an October 2015 report prepared by the Climate Leadership Team and endorsed by the NDP government appointed Climate Solutions and Clean Growth Advisory Council. The Bill also broadens the regulatory authority of the Minister of the Environment to implement industry specific GHG reduction targets. Based on the Climate Leadership Group report, that could mean a 30 per cent reduction equal to 6.3MT of CO2 in the transportation sector; a 30 per cent reduction equal to 8.4MT of CO2 in the industrial sector and a 50 per cent reduction equal to 3.4MT of CO2 in the built environment sector. Other recommendations include expanding the scope of the carbon tax to apply to all GHG sources, developing a low carbon transportation strategy for transitioning the sector to emit 30 per cent less GHGs by 2030 and measures to reduce fugitive and vented methane emissions.
 
Bill 34 also introduces a bi-annual climate change report as of October 23, 2018, which will add accountability to the government to show their progress. The introduction of Bill 34 will raise challenges and impacts for the industry, but also opportunities for the industry to demonstrate that propane is a viable, GHG-reducing fuel with a well-established distribution system at the ready.
 
With the new legislation, the CPA expects some established programs, such as those designated for electric vehicles, to be re-evaluated so there are potentially new opportunities for propane. As the bill enters its third reading, the CPA will define the challenges and opportunities for the propane industry. For more information on the bill or to share your thoughts, please contact Director, Government Relations (West) Darren Cunningham at darrencunningham@propane.ca or 403-801-9111.
 

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