Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction engagement

Gathered input on the proposed system to reduce emissions while keeping Alberta industries competitive.

Status: Completed
Ministry responsible: Environment and Parks
Completed: 2019


We asked Albertans and industry stakeholders for feedback on the proposed Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) system to make sure it was designed to meet the needs of Alberta's environment and economy.

TIER is an improved way to manage emissions from large industries like oil and gas, which account for more than half of Alberta's total greenhouse gas emissions. The new system encourages industrial facilities to find innovative ways to reduce emissions and invest in clean technology to stay competitive. It will replace the current Carbon Competitiveness Incentive Regulation on January 1, 2020.

TIER is a realistic approach to addressing climate change that will reduce emissions and reassure investors without overregulating and slowing the economy. The system is the centrepiece of Alberta’s approach to climate change, which government will provide further details on in fall 2019. While there are other policies currently being reviewed by government, the scope of this engagement was primarily focused on the TIER system.

Get involved

We gathered input on the following topics to help design the TIER system:

  • emissions coverage and threshold
  • criteria for opt-in/opt-out provisions
  • how to treat new facilities and best-in-class facilities
  • compliance flexibility
  • fund credit price
  • treatment of conventional oil and gas producers below the emissions threshold
  • TIER Fund design for innovation funding
  • reporting and verification requirements
  • Cost Containment Program
  • regulatory review frequency

Read the TIER Discussion Document

How TIER would work

Under the system, TIER would apply to facilities that emit more than 100,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases in 2016, or a subsequent year. These facilities would have to reduce their emissions by 10% in 2020, and then by an additional 1% each year after 2020.

To meet the requirements of the proposed system, facilities would have the following options:

  • reduce their emissions
  • use credits from facilities that have met and exceeded their emission reduction targets
  • use emissions offsets from organizations that are not regulated by TIER, but have voluntarily reduced their emissions
  • pay into a TIER Fund

The TIER Fund would be used for new and cleaner Alberta-based technologies that reduce emissions, like improved oil sands extraction methods and research and investment in carbon capture, utilization and storage. It would also be used to reduce Alberta’s deficit and support the province’s energy war room – which is now incorporated as the Canadian Energy Centre.

TIER also proposes that electricity facilities meet a good-as-best gas standard, where their emissions are equal to the cleanest natural gas-fired generation plant.


Your feedback informed the development of the new TIER regulations, which will be in place on January 1, 2020.