Canada Passes Bill C-59 To Battle Greenwashing

Canada Passes Bill C-59 To Battle Greenwashing - Carbon Herald
Source: wpoeschl from Pixabay

After much anticipation, Canada passed bill C-59, which among other things, is geared toward regulating environmental claims and combating greenwashing.

The new law has already been received with a significant amount of pushback from the energy industry and has been criticized by the government of Alberta – the country’s largest oil and gas producer.

Alberta Premier Danielle Smith called the legislation ‘draconian’, as it will prevent the E&P sector from being able to voice their side of arguments in debates that are becoming ever more polarized about climate change.

Together with Energy and Minerals Minister Brian Jean and Environment and Protected Areas Minister Rebecca Schulz, Smith released a joint statement regarding the new legislation.

Relevant: Canada Oil And Gas Firms May Cut Production To Meet Emissions Cap

According to the statement, the bill seems to be ‘part of an agenda to create chaos and uncertainty for the purpose of phasing out the energy industry altogether.’

“Ironically, this kind of absurd authoritarian censorship will only work to stifle many billions in investments in emissions reducing technologies — the very technologies the world needs to reduce emissions while avoiding energy poverty for billions around the world,” it says.

Last week, ahead of the government’s decision, Canada’s oil sands consortium Pathways Alliance scrubbed its website and deleted all content on its social media channels.

Currently, the website content is still missing for all but a disclaimer that explains this to be the ‘a direct consequence of the new legislation’ and the uncertainty around its interpretation. 

Relevant: Pathways Alliance Scrubs Website In Anticipation Of New Greenwashing Law

On the bright side, bill C-59 offers significant tax breaks for companies investing in carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) equipment. 

These refundable tax credits are tiered, with the most generous rate (60%) going to equipment specifically designed to capture carbon dioxide directly from the air.  

Equipment used in the traditional capture, transport, storage, and utilization of CO2 qualifies for a 50% credit, while ongoing operational expenses related to carbon capture receive a 37.5% credit. 

This incentive package surpasses what is currently offered in the United States.

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