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The Province’s new roadmap to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the next nine years is set to impact the natural gas industry.

Premier John Horgan was joined by George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, along with other climate change leaders Monday to launch the Clean BC Roadmap to 2030.

“We need to make sure that we’re regulating the carbon emissions of our largest polluters, we need to make sure we’re assisting people in making a transition from how they do business today to how we need to do business in the future,” said Premier John Horgan.

Among the string of policy proposals in the plan, a few will affect the natural gas industry.

The strategy includes quickly eliminating as many methane sources as possible before 2035 and targets a 75 per cent reduction in methane emissions by 2030 for the oil and gas sector.

The plan mentions a provincial approach to carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) to explore suitable storage locations, support B.C. clean tech companies, and help industry transition to net zero.

New large industrial facilities will be required to show how they align with the government’s 2030 and 3040 targets, and submit plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

The roadmap also notes the Province’s commitment to cleaning up all orphan wells in BC before 2030 through an industry-funded program.

There will also be a new GHG cap for natural gas utilities with various ways to achieve it.

The roadmap builds on progress made since 2018, said the Province, and is a part of achieving the Paris emissions reduction targets for 2030 and reaching net-zero by 2050.

To achieve the 2030 emissions goal, the Province has planned other initiatives such as reducing the number of kilometres driven and boosting the carbon tax.

The new plan sets a target of 10,000 public electric vehicle charging stations by 2030 and calls for the electrification of public transit and ferry fleets.

It would provide local governments with cash for climate change initiatives.

The strategy includes increasing the price of carbon pollution by meeting or exceeding the 2019 federal benchmark of $170 per tonne starting in 2023 through taxes consumers would pay on fuel and goods as well as by industry that emits carbon dioxide.

“Here in B.C., the threat of climate change is no longer decades or even years away. The impacts are all around us, from devastating wildfires to intense heat waves and droughts,” said Horgan.

“The scale of the climate emergency demands that we act with even greater urgency than ever before. By bringing people and businesses together, we can rise to the challenge and seize the opportunity to build a stronger, more resilient B.C. for everyone. That’s what this plan is all about.”

With files from the Canadian Press 

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