The Federal GHG Offset System: Offset Credits

31.08.20 10:24 AM Comment(s)
Written by Chad Grasza

The Federal Greenhouse Gas Offset System (“Federal GHG Offset System”) proposed by the Government of Canada complements the Green Gas Pollution Pricing Act by further detailing one of the ways businesses can atone for excess gas emissions: offset credits. Those are generated by projects segregated from others based on their “additionality”. Proponents must therefore ensure that theirs reduce greenhouse gas to a higher level than the one set by legal requirements. Companies having exceeded their quota on gas emissions can select one of those projects and buy enough credits from their promoters - each corresponds to one tone of CO2 or its equivalents - to compensate for it. Eight types of projects have been selected by the Government of Canada in its discussion paper. 

•Advanced refrigeration systems 

•Aerobic composting of organic waste 


•Anaerobic digestion

•Improved forest management

•Landfill methane management 

•Livestock manure management 

•Soil organic carbon

Each type will have specific protocols for quantifying GHG emissions reduction, but those won’t have any effect in places where provincial or territorial ones already exist for similar projects.  With the Federal GHG Offset System, the government is aiming to redirect investments to environmentally conscious projects while providing incentives for industrial facilities to better manage their gas emissions. Before finalizing the regulations, the Government of Canada is calling for comments from stakeholders. 


Canada. Environment and Natural Resources. Federal Greenhouse Gas Offset System, 2 Jul. 2020, Government of Canada, 2020. Accessed 26 Aug. 2020.

Richardson, Peter, et al. “Canada: Federal Government shortlists eight types of projects for the development of carbon offset protocols.” Lexology, 14 Aug. 2020,
+subscriber+daily+feed&utm_content=Lexology+Daily+Newsfeed+2020-08-17&utm_term=. Accessed 26 Aug. 2020.