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Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Electricity Generation

Canada already has one of the cleanest electricity grids in the world with over three quarters of our electricity supply emitting no greenhouse gases (GHGs). As part of its overall approach to tackling climate change, the Government of Canada is taking tough regulatory action that further strengthens our position as a world leader in clean electricity generation.

The Keephills Coal-Fired Power Plant - Alberta, Canada

Coal-Fired Electricity

Coal-fired generating units are responsible for close to three quarters of the GHG emissions from Canada's electricity sector, and about 10% of Canada's total GHG emissions. In September 2012, the Government of Canada published final regulations to reduce GHG emissions from coal-fired electricity.

Features and benefits of the Regulations:

  • Performance standard takes effect on July 1, 2015
  • Establish an emissions performance standard of 420 tonnes of CO2 per gigawatt hour of electricity produced for new coal-fired electricity generation units (i.e. those commissioned after July 1,2015), and units that have reached the end of their life.
  • Include provisions to ease transition for industry and to ensure that the electricity supply will not be compromised in any region.
  • Contain incentives for the use of carbon capture and storage, a leading technology for reducing GHG emissions.
  • Expected to result in a cumulative reduction in GHG emissions of about 214 megatonnes and cumulative health benefits of $4.2 billion in the first 21 years.

For more information on Canada's action on climate change, visit

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