Oil and gas sector now Canada’s biggest generator of greenhouse gases
By Will Campbell
The Canadian Press: April 12, 2014
TORONTO – An environmental analyst says the rise of oil and gas production as Canada’s biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions adds further weight to calls for the federal government to bring in long-promised regulations for the oil industry.
The Environment Canada report quietly released Friday reveals the energy sector has now surpassed transportation as the largest generator of the climate-change causing gases.
The report, covering the period from 1990 to 2012, states that oil and gas now account for one-quarter of Canada’s greenhouse emissions, narrowly edging out transportation.
Analyst P.J. Partington with eco think-tank the Pembina Institute said the oil industry becoming Canada’s biggest source of emissions underscores the need for the Harper government to make good on a longstanding pledge to bring in rules cutting the oil patch’s climate impact.
“We can’t hide from the challenge of regulating that sector. If Canada’s going to play its role in the global fight against climate change there’s no avoiding that we need to have strong regulations for our oil and gas sector,” he said Saturday.
The country’s overall emissions were down by less than one per cent between 2011 and 2012, the most recent year available, largely due to reductions in electricity and manufacturing.
Partington said the drop was something of a surprise, given Environment Canada had predicted an uptick. But he said it’s too soon to say what direction the figure will go in the coming years.
Energy sector emissions have seen the biggest jump since 1990 — roughly 70 per cent — due entirely to crude oil and oilsands expansion, the report says. That’s more than twice the growth rate of transportation-related greenhouse gases in the same period.
(Read the full article at Winnipeg Free Press)
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