On 16 June 2017, the Alberta Oil Sands Advisory Group (OSAG) released its report Recommendations on Implementation of the Oil Sands Emissions Limit Established by the Alberta Climate Leadership Plan, which sets out recommendations for implementing and remaining within the 100 megatonne per year greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions limit for the oil sands sector articulated in Alberta’s Climate Leadership Plan.
The report recommends the introduction of a regulatory regime that places a continued emphasis on emissions intensity as GHG emissions approach the emissions limit. The new regime includes forecasting requirements and the issuance of annual authorizations for GHG emissions by oil sands facilities. Through the allocation of these authorizations and other mechanisms, the regime seeks to encourage innovation and ensure that the emissions limit is not exceeded.
The OSAG was established by Alberta’s Minister of Environment and Parks in July 2016 to advise the Alberta government on the implementation of the plan as it relates to the oil sands. Pursuant to its mandate letter, the OSAG was specifically tasked with advising on the implementation of the emissions limit. Its membership for the purposes of the preparation of the report included a cross-section of representatives, including environmental, aboriginal, and industry leaders.