Authors: Marla Orenstein and Jade McLean

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Executive Summary

With the increasing focus across all sectors of society on reducing GHG emissions, governments across the country have enacted legislation and regulations intended to further this goal. The approaches taken have varied widely, employing a variety of policy tools applied across an array of sectors and contexts.

When these policies complement each other, opportunities to achieve emission reduction goals are enhanced. But when these policies overlap or contradict each other, it can create confusion, increase costs and reduce competitiveness – or even result in court challenges being mounted by one jurisdiction against another. An excess of policies working in the same space also contributes to a perception of regulatory pancaking, or excessive burden on businesses around compliance. Without a comprehensive list, it is not possible to understand the landscape of what exists currently and how existing regulations interact and overlap. A comprehensive list is also crucial to being able to analyze whether any new proposed regulation will be effective in inducing additional GHG reductions, or merely add red tape and cost.

In this compendium, the focus is on legislation and regulations, rather than programs or policies. This is because legislation and regulations represent baseline legal requirements for compliance and because regulations are more durable than programs (programs often expire with limited funding). Moreover, the compendium only includes regulations at the federal/provincial/territorial level and does not include municipal-level regulations or requirements that may have been established by industry associations. This decision was made in order to keep the amount of information manageable.

The compendium itself begins on page 15 of this report. A description of the methodology used and the main findings precede it. A downloadable version of the compendium in Excel format is available here.

Read the full report in the pdf below.