Canada: A World Environmental Leader in the Oil and Gas Sector

  • Canada is one of the few major suppliers of crude oil to the Gulf Coast taking concrete action to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
  • Its world-class  environmental  monitoring system is founded on science and transparency.
  • The province of Alberta is the first North American jurisdiction with mandatory GHG reduction targets for large industrial GHG emitters, including the oil sands.
  • Innovation and research drives improvement in the oil sands – GHG emissions have dropped 26 per cent per barrel between 1990 and 2011.

As a major world energy producer, Canada is constantly looking for ways to ensure that its oil and gas reserves are developed responsibly, within a framework of strong environmental protection.

Through more effective, efficient and transparent regulations and investment in innovation and science, Canada is improving its environmental performance and taking concrete action to reduce GHG emissions.

Canada’s oil sands contributed about 7.8 per cent of Canada’s total GHG emissions in 2011, which is equal to approximately 0.1 per cent of global emissions. Canada recognizes that every tonne of GHGs matters, and that is why, as a signatory to the Copenhagen Accord, Canada is committed to the same GHG reduction target as the United States.

Canada is one of the few major suppliers of crude oil to the Gulf Coast taking concrete action to reduce GHG emissions. In fact, most other suppliers have not committed to making any GHG reductions. Canada has also announced its intention to further reduce the environmental impact of the oil sands. Canada plans to be one of a very few oil producers in the world with national binding regulations on its oil and gas sector.

Canada’s oil sands are already subject to provincial regulations that are driving investment in new environmental research and bringing emissions down through technological innovation. Alberta has regulations that require large oil sands operators to either reduce emissions or contribute money toward innovative research to improve the environmental performance of the industry.

Canada, in partnership with Alberta, is also putting in place a world-class oil sands monitoring system, which ensures that the environmental impacts from oil sands extraction are both known and reported. Its independent, expert environmental regulation is founded on science and transparency and partnership with industry, First Nations and other levels of government.

The oil and gas sector has a long history of technological innovation that has led to improvements in energy efficiency and associated GHG emissions reductions.

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Did You Know?

Financial penalties of up to $400,000 are being introduced for companies that do not meet environmental assessment requirements.

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