Report of the committee
Thursday, November 29, 2018
The Standing Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources has the honour to table its
Your committee, which was authorized to examine the subject matter of those elements contained in Division 5 of Part 4 of Bill C-86, A second Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on February 27, 2018 and other measures, has, in obedience to the order of reference of Wednesday, November 7, 2018, examined the said subject-matter and now reports as follows:
Division 5 of Part 4 amends the Canada–Newfoundland and Labrador Atlantic Accord Implementation Act and the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act to facilitate the application of the Newfoundland and Labrador carbon pricing regime to the province’s offshore. It would also allow the federal carbon pricing regime to apply should the provincial carbon pricing regime not meet the federal benchmark in the future. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador sent a written submission to the committee supporting these amendments. The committee also received a written brief from the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil & Gas Industries Association expressing support for the provincial carbon pricing approach being implemented through this legislation.
Division 5 of Part 4 also amends the Offshore Health and Safety Act to postpone the repeal of transitional regulations set to expire at the end of 2019. These transitional regulations support occupational health and safety in the Atlantic Accord offshore areas while permanent regulations are developed. Since permanent regulations have not been developed within the initial five-year time frame, more time is now needed. According to federal officials who testified before this committee, these amendments are supported by the Government of Nova Scotia and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.
The committee invited affected stakeholders, including the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Government of Nova Scotia, the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, to appear before the committee or to submit written briefs expressing their views on this legislation. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board and the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil & Gas Industries Association provided written submissions supporting these amendments. No other parties appeared, and to date no other written material has been received.
Committee members are concerned about the length of time it is taking to develop permanent regulations for offshore health and safety in the Atlantic Accord offshore area. The committee urges the federal government to do so without delay.