The provincial government has announced new regulations concerning greenhouse gas emissions.
Newfoundland and Labrador is the third largest producer of greenhouse gasses in the country on a per capita basis.
Transportation contributes 34 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions, onshore industry cough up 19 per cent, while the offshore accounts for another 16 per cent. The Holyrood Generating Station alone contributes nine per cent of all greenhouse gasses produced in the province.
New reporting standards and caps on emissions are proposed. Companies that produce more than 15,000 tonnes of emissions annually will report to government on their emissions, while companies that produce more than 25,000 tonnes will have to comply with an emissions cap to be announced in the next two years. The delay is to give industry a chance to adjust to the new measures.
The offshore oil industry is not covered in the new legislation. The plan is to regulate emissions in that industry in tandem with the federal government.
Minister Trimper says the legislation will work in in tandem with industry in hopes of reducing emissions in the province.
He says a balance needs to be struck with this kind of legislation. He says government wants to do the changes with industry, not to them.
Trimper says while a carbon tax is not a bad idea, it doesn’t guarantee results.
He says it’s an incentive that can change behaviour to avoid a tax, but you’re not legislating industry explicitly to reduce their emissions.