Update on the Federal Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Offset System

Update on the Federal Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Offset System

Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) is beginning federal offset protocol development for the proposed Federal Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Offset System.

These will set out a consistent approach for quantifying GHG emissions reductions and removals for specific offset project types, outline eligible offset project activities and establish clear rules for establishing baseline and project scenarios.

The first federal offset protocols scheduled for development in early 2021 include the following:

  • Natural Climate Solutions/Agriculture
    • Enhanced Soil Organic Carbon
  • Forest and Urban
    • Advanced Refrigeration Systems
    • Improved Forest Management
    • Landfill Methane Management

Project types were selected for initial protocol development based on the objective criteria outlined in the discussion paper, Carbon Pricing: Considerations for Protocol Development in the Federal Greenhouse Gas Offset System (July 2020).

As the initial protocols are completed, work on new protocols will begin. Subsequent project types under consideration for federal offset protocol development include:

  • Natural Climate Solutions/Agriculture
    • Livestock Feed Management
  • Forest and Urban
    • Aerobic composting,
    • Afforestation/Reforestation,
    • Avoided conversion of forests.

Developing New Protocols
ECCC will also consider developing protocols for additional project types. For example, the results of further analysis and pilot projects may provide additional information regarding the feasibility of existing protocols.

These are:

  • Natural Climate Solutions/Agriculture
    • Avoided Conversion of Grasslands
    • Reduced Nitrogen Oxide Emissions from Agriculture Fertilizers (NERP)
    • Anaerobic Digestion
    • Livestock Manure Management

Consideration of protocols will be re-visited once regulations are finalized for the federal Clean Fuel Standard.

Engagement on Protocol Development
To support federal GHG offset protocol development, ECCC is seeking input on a volunteer basis from external technical experts with significant expertise related to offset project development; greenhouse gas validation and verification; sector-based best management practices; offset protocol development; and/or relevant academic research.

Technical Experts Roster
ECCC is establishing a Roster of Technical Experts from which Technical Expert Teams will be established to provide technical input on the development of specific federal offset protocols. Individuals who have significant expertise in one or more of the areas mentioned above and who would like to be considered for placement on the Roster of Technical Experts are invited to download the candidate profile form and personal information collection consent form here.

Indigenous Perspectives
ECCC will also be seeking Indigenous perspectives to inform the development of protocols. While Indigenous participants are invited to engage through the Roster of Experts process, a separate dedicated process for Indigenous engagement is being developed.

BCC makes recommendations on Federal Offset Policy and Alberta Climate Policy