“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Minister of Environment and Climate Change Steven Guilbeault recently announced at the United Nations General Assembly in New York that the federal government would be unilaterally increasing its methane reduction targets. Once again, the federal government has announced that it is unilaterally implementing an unconstitutional policy that will devastate Alberta’s oil and gas industry without any meaningful consultation.
“Our track record is clear. Significant reductions in methane emissions are possible and, for years, Alberta’s oil and gas industry has led the way:
- Alberta was the first oil and gas producing jurisdiction to put requirements on emissions from flaring, starting in the early 1990s.
- Alberta was the first province in Canada to set a methane emissions target for the oil and gas sector.
- Alberta has committed to reducing methane emissions by 45 per cent below 2014 levels by 2025, and we are ahead of schedule – with 44 per cent reductions as of 2021.
“These successes were achieved because our province has been in charge of regulating our methane emissions. They were accomplished through collaboration between Alberta’s government and industry, and have proven to be more effective than earlier proposed federal methane regulations that would have otherwise been applied in Alberta.
“This recent announcement suggests that the federal government is abandoning the proven approach that Alberta has taken in favour of top-down, punitive federal regulations. It also compromises work that is underway through Alberta’s Emissions Reduction and Energy Development Plan to further reduce methane emissions in the years ahead.
“It is appalling, but not surprising, that the Prime Minister and Minister Guilbeault would find it acceptable to undermine Alberta’s successful work to reduce emissions, all for a photo op in New York. These statements also undermine and risk the viability of the work commenced by the Alberta-Ottawa working group currently underway to align Alberta’s and Ottawa’s emissions reduction efforts.
“In the coming months, Alberta will keep working to lead the world on reducing methane emissions. We invite Ottawa to work with us and not against us as we do so.”