Nova Scotia plans cap-and-trade program for power plant CO2 emissions

Dive Brief:

  • Canada has reached an agreement with the province of Nova Scotia that calls for the establishment of a cap-and-trade program for carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

  • Nova Scotia is also working with the central government to draw up an equivalency agreement for the accelerated phase-out of coal-fired generation in the province.

  • The agreement also calls for the adoption of a provincial target that meets or exceeds Canada’s target of reducing emissions by 30% from 2005 levels by 2030.

Dive Insight:

Nova Scotia’s plans to curb power plants emissions align its energy strategy with the just announced plan by the central government to phase out traditional coal plants by 2030.

Under that plan, traditional coal-fired plants are required to meet a performance standard of 420 tonnes of carbon dioxide (tCO2)/GWh within the next 14 years.

That standard allows for coal plants to continue operation if they are equipped with carbon capture and sequestrations (CCS) technology.

The central government’s new mandate gives provinces the option of limiting CO2 emissions by either imposing a price on CO2 emissions or a cap-and-trade program.

“We are extremely pleased that the province of Nova Scotia intends to implement a cap-and-trade system as its approach to pricing carbon pollution. Their proposed approach ensures that Nova Scotia will remain a leader in contributing to Canada’s international emissions-reduction target under the Paris Agreement,” Catherine McKenna, Canada's minister of environment and climate change, said in a statement.

Only four of Canada's ten provinces still burn coal for electricity generation, and the country obtains about 80% of its power from non-emitting resources, such as hydropower.

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Filed Under: Generation Solar & Renewables Regulation & Policy
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