ATL: Atlantic Committee members see opportunity for growth in the auto propane sector

On October 24, CPA members from across Atlantic Canada met in Moncton. A large group of 25 members attended the meeting to discuss issues and accomplishments over the last few months.

During the meeting, members participated in a roundtable discussion on such issues as the importance of the New Brunswick government putting propane-fuelled buses into service in September. Members saw this as a very important example of the potential growth for auto propane within the fleet sector. 

The committee discussed other potential fuel switching opportunities that would benefit the propane industry, inluding energy for the home. The advantages of propane versus oil when accounting for the differences in insurance costs, was noted.

The committee heard presentations from regulators, Paul Fowler, chief inspector for the Province of Nova Scotia and Mike Leblanc, gas safety inspector for the Province of New Brunswick.

Both inspectors provided an overview of propane safety for their respective provinces and updated members on upcoming provincial harmonization discussions with respect to fuel safety. As part of the effort to achieve the harmonization of safety regulations for Atlantic Canada, it was proposed that a letter be sent to the Harmonization Committee indicating that fees should also be reviewed, with the goal of being reduced as regulations are streamlined.

It was also noted that Nova Scotia has approved PTI training course, 300-05 – Cargo Loading and Securement: Propane Tanks, Cylinders, and Equipment. It is the first Atlantic province to accept this course.

Nova Scotia is looking for ways to improve the permit application process for new installations and help businesses receive quicker response times. It was agreed that the CPA will write a letter to the Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, the Honourable Labi Kousoulis, as well as to the executive director of Technical Safety, Jeff Dolan, to discuss the need to reduce the length of the application.

CPA’s Vice-President of Government Relations, Allan Murphy updated the committee regarding the next steps in terms of advocacy in the wake of the federal election. The CPA is planning to meet with members of the new cabinet as well as new and returning members of parliament. See CPA outreach at federal level continues for more information.

After four years, the October Atlantic committee meeting was the last one to be presided over by outgoing Chair Steve Ferguson. The October meeting was the first for Royden Boudreau from Sullivan Fuels, in his capacity as the committee’s new vice chair.

The next meeting of the Atlantic Committee will be in March 2020, taking place in Truro, Nova Scotia.