Canada explores GHG emissions reduction

By Staff | October 24, 2012

A report published by the Wood Pellet Association of Canada demonstrates there is significant opportunity for the Canadian wood pellet industry if the Canadian power industry continues to move away from coal.

There are, however, several hurdles that must be overcome. Specifically, the Canadian power market is closely integrated with the U.S., which means the transformation of Canada’s power industry can’t occur in isolation. The lack of firm U.S. policy, therefore, could  negatively impact Canada’s policy, including its greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction goals. The Canadian government has proposed to regulate GHG emissions from coal-fired power plants, which has sparked the Canadian sector to find ways to reduce emissions. The proposed regulations are scheduled to become active next year for new projects, and in 2015 for older plants.

Canada currently has 21 coal-fired power plants, and each currently has three options to meet GHG reduction goals: convert to natural gas, install carbon capture and storage, or cofire with biomass. The report compares conversion options and includes different methods of cofiring and torrefaction. It also addresses the Canadian biomass supply.