Government of Canada Launches Second Round of Public Engagements to Establish the Clean Electricity Regulations

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August 4, 2022

Access to reliable and affordable clean electricity for transportation, industrial activities, and heating buildings is key to achieving cleaner air and a net-zero emission economy by 2050. A net-zero emission electricity grid by 2035 is foundational for Canada to build clean energy solutions across the economy.

The Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, announced the publication of the proposed Frame for the Clean Electricity Regulations. This is the second engagement document that will guide the development of the Clean Electricity Regulations (CER). It follows a discussion paper published in March 2022.

Formerly known as the Clean Electricity Standard, the federal government has collaborated with the provinces and territories, Indigenous partners, utilities, industries, academics, non-governmental organizations, and interested Canadians in the development of the CER. This inclusive approach supports the competitiveness of the economy by providing a clear basis for provinces and territories to plan and operate their electricity grids, while continuing to deliver reliable electricity to Canadians and keeping costs for households and businesses affordable.

Canada’s CER is being developed around three core principles:

  1. Maximizing greenhouse gas reductions to achieve net-zero emissions from the electricity grid by 2035;
  2. Ensuring electricity grid reliability to support a strong economy and guarantee Canadians’ safety by having access to secure energy that supports their cooling needs in the summer and warmth in the winter; and
  3. Maintaining electricity affordability for homeowners and businesses. 

The CER will help in providing long-term regulatory certainty while encouraging the increased deployment of non-emitting electricity options such as wind, solar, and small modular reactors. It will also encourage the use of interties from provinces and territories with an abundance of hydroelectric power; incentivize increased use of hydrogen, battery storage, and carbon capture and storage; and help to set the stage for the increased use of demand-side management and distributed energy in Canada.

The proposed regulatory frame was informed by over 160 written submissions and numerous discussions with key interested parties during open and broad engagement completed by the Government of Canada earlier this year.

Those who are interested are invited to submit comments on the proposed Frame for the Clean Electricity Regulations by August 17, 2022, to: ECD-DEC@ec.gc.ca

Quotes

“The majority of Canadians already depend on clean, reliable electricity to power their everyday lives. Thanks to our progress in phasing out coal, Canada is ready to take the next step in fighting climate change by developing an electricity grid that is net-zero emissions by 2035. This is a key part of our government’s plan for a healthy environment and healthy economy. I look forward to working with provinces, territories, Indigenous leaders, industry, environmental organizations, and other Canadians to put Canada on the path to be fully powered by affordable, reliable, and clean energy.”
– The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Quick facts
  • Canada’s electricity grid is over 80 percent non-emitting, putting the country in a good position to achieve a net-zero emission electricity grid by 2035.
  • To achieve net-zero emissions economy-wide by 2050, Canada’s economy will need to be powered by both clean electricity and low-carbon fuels, such as hydrogen, advanced biofuels, liquid synthetic fuels, and renewable natural gas.

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