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Carbon and Greenhouse Gas Legislation in Prince Edward Island

September 2019

Carbon & Greenhouse Gas Legislation - PEI

Federal carbon pollution pricing system

Under the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, the federal carbon pollution pricing system partially applies to Prince Edward Island. The following features of the federal system are applicable in the province:

  • For larger industrial facilities, an output-based pricing system for emissions-intensive trade-exposed (EITE) industries applies. It covers facilities emitting 50,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent or more annually.
  • Smaller EITE facilities that emit 10,000 tonnes or more of CO2 equivalent annually may voluntarily opt in to the system over time.

Carbon levy on fuels

In addition to the federal carbon pollution pricing system, Prince Edward Island has also implemented a carbon levy on fuels under the Climate Leadership Act (the Act) and the Climate Leadership Regulations. Under the province’s carbon levy, consumers pay a net increase of 1 cent per litre on gasoline and diesel purchased at the pump.

The Act allows individuals involved in farming and aquiculture to apply for a levy exemption permit to purchase fuel exempt from the carbon levy.

Climate Change Action Plan 2018-2023

The Government of Prince Edward Island developed a five-year Climate Change Action Plan (the Plan). In line with other jurisdictions in Canada, the provincial government has committed to a reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 30% below 2005 levels by 2030.

The Plan focuses on five action areas: (1) adapting to climate change, (2) reducing GHG emissions, (3) carbon sequestration, (4) education and capacity building, and (5) research and knowledge building.

Through the Plan, the provincial government has committed to, amongst other things:

  • Adopt the federal backstop for industrial emitters.
  • Grant exemptions to the agriculture and fisheries sectors.
  • Work to achieve the goals of the Pan-Canadian Framework and, through relative pricing on cleaner energy, mitigation efforts and clean growth.
  • Provide P.E.I. residents, businesses, industries, and municipalities with more opportunities to reduce their energy consumption and switch to lower-carbon energy systems and technologies by offering new and expanded programs and services through efficiencyPEI.
  • Design and install a province-wide electric vehicle charging network.
  • Implement a greening government program, including the development of a GHG emissions inventory for government, energy efficiency upgrades to provincial buildings, improved fuel efficiency of the government’s vehicle fleet and a commitment to green procurement.
  • Increase support for existing funding programs, such as the Alternative Land Use Services program and the Forest Enhancement Program, to expand carbon sequestration opportunities.

Regional GHG emissions goals

Prince Edward Island is a party to the Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers’ updated climate change action plan. As such, the province has adopted the goal of reducing regional GHG emissions by 35 to 45% below 1990 levels by 2030.

Energy Rebate

Through its Energy Rebate program, the province has committed to providing its residents with a 10% rebate to the first block of residential electricity (2,000 kWh per month), as well as on lower-emitting heat sources, including firewood, pellets, and propane.

Provincial Sustainable Transportation Strategy

As transportation accounts for 48% of Prince Edward Island’s GHG emissions, the province is currently developing a Sustainable Transportation Strategy (the Strategy). The Strategy will include actions to decrease GHG emissions and increase transit options. 

How does this policy compare with other regions in Canada?

View infographic

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