Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers Responsible for Energy and Mines highlight Priorities for Upcoming Year

Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers Responsible for Energy and Mines highlight Priorities for Upcoming Year

by ahnationtalk on July 22, 2015381 Views

July 21, 2015 Halifax Natural Resources Canada

The federal, provincial, and territorial ministers responsible for energy and mines today announced significant progress supporting enhanced economic growth, energy security, innovation, Aboriginal engagement and environmental protection and performance with the objective of further increasing the environmentally responsible development of natural resources across our country.

The ministers affirmed the critical importance of principles consistent with recent annual meetings:

  • Responsible development of Canada’s energy and mines sectors is critical to our economic competitiveness, job creation and long-term prosperity;
  • The continued advancement of energy infrastructure projects (including oil, gas, and electricity) is fundamental to gaining access to new markets, generating economic growth and revenue for critical social programs;
  • Continued diversification of Canada’s energy sources and markets contributes to domestic and global energy security;
  • Recent successes implementing innovative technologies and policies dealing with carbon and enhancing Canada’s leadership as an environmentally responsible global resource producer and supplier;
  • Effective cooperation between governments, regulators and industry is essential to continued improvements to build on Canada’s world class record of safe energy transportation and transmission;
  • Effective engagement is essential for advancing the objective of ensuring that Aboriginal people fully benefit from the responsible development of natural resources; and
  • The junior mining and resource sector is a major contributor to Canada’s competitiveness and global expertise, and the importance of access to capital in the discovery and development of the next generation of resource projects is recognized.

In particular, following this week’s meeting, the ministers emphasized the need over the coming year to:

  • Fully implement the federal Pipeline Safety Act that received Royal Assent in June 2015 and continue consistent action by all governments within their respective jurisdiction resulting in tangible measures that improve safety by pipeline, marine and rail;
  • Explore and encourage innovative technologies to help Canadian natural resource industries address productivity challenges and environmental performance;
  • Ensure that standards for industry reflect the highest level of environmental protection. This includes the review of recommendations made subsequent to the Mount Polley incident in British Columbia to determine how all jurisdictions can strengthen mine regulations;
  • Continue to advance the National Orphaned/Abandoned Mines Initiative, a multi-stakeholder forum that provides a platform for sharing experiences and best practices in mine site remediation;
  • Work within our respective jurisdictions to maintain the momentum that has contributed to Canada’s becoming the second-fastest growing clean energy market in the G20 and possessing the highest share of renewables in its electricity mix in the G7;
  • Enhance North American cooperation to protect Canada’s competiveness while supporting jobs, the economy and the environment, including through the North American Energy Ministers’ Working Group on Energy and Climate Change established in May 2015;
  • Enhance engagement with Aboriginal communities through mechanisms like the Major Projects Management Office – West — and other effective means — to share information, identify common interests and facilitate their participation in natural resources;
  • Increase federal-provincial-territorial cooperation on highlighting Canada as a secure, reliable and responsible producer and supplier of energy and minerals. This will effectively build on milestones over the past year including leadership on the European Union Fuel Quality Directive and mandatory reporting legislation;
  • Work together in the interests of enhancing Canada’s contribution to global energy security at home and abroad. According to Statistics Canada, between 2005 and 2014, Canada’s crude oil imports declined by 42 percent while our exports have increased by 81 percent. Projects such as LNG and hydro proposals will continue this important momentum;
  • Help Canadian energy and mining sectors address environmental performance through the advancement and deployment of research, technology and innovation;
  • Ministers agreed to work together on initiatives to provide and promote evidence-based public awareness on the development of unconventional petroleum resources; and
  • Collaborate on responsible energy use, which provides cost savings to consumers and industry as well as contributing to meeting environmental objectives.

Together, these actions will provide Canadians with increased economic opportunities while protecting their safety, security and environment, build Canada’s competitive advantage in a rapidly changing global marketplace, and improve living standards for Canadians.

Federal, provincial and territorial governments are committed to taking collective actions to promote Canada’s role as a secure supplier of natural resources globally and to ensure long-term economic stability and prosperity for all Canadians.

The next Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference will take place from August 21 to August 23, 2016, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Quotes

“The outcomes of this meeting demonstrate that our partnership with the provinces and territories is focused on creating results. Through these actions and mutual interests, we are committing to further enhance jobs, economic prosperity, energy security and the environment within our respective jurisdictions for all Canadians.”

The Honourable Greg Rickford,
Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and
Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

“Working together, the federal, provincial and territorial governments can achieve further economic success and a lower carbon future from the responsible development of our energy sectors. During the conference, we discussed the importance of advancing innovative research, technology and regulation and developing our domestic expertise and supply chain for the worldwide energy market.”

The Honourable Michel Samson
Nova Scotia’s Minister of the Department of Energy

“It was a pleasure to host mines ministers from across Canada over the past several days. The discussions at our meeting regarding best practices in Canadian jurisdictions, particularly in the areas of building public confidence in natural resource projects and creating the success factors for communities to benefit from mineral resource developments, will help Nova Scotia and Canada create the best possible environment for responsible mineral resource development.”

The Honourable Zach Churchill
Nova Scotia’s Minister of the Department of Natural Resources

Associated Links

NRCan EMMC Publications

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Contacts

Media may contact:
Alexandra Lemieux
Press Secretary
Office of Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and
Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
613-996-2007

or

Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-992-4447

The general public may contact:

Mon.–Fri., 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. EDT
Telephone: 613-995-0947
TTY: 613-996-4397
(teletype for the hearing-impaired)
E-mail: [email protected]

Follow us on Twitter: @NRCan (http://twitter.com/nrcan)

NRCan’s news releases and backgrounders are available at www.nrcan.gc.ca/media

BACKGROUNDER

Canada’s Annual Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference — Energy

At this year’s Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference (EMMC), hosted by Nova Scotia, federal, provincial and territorial ministers discussed current opportunities and challenges for the energy sector related to diversifying markets, enhancing competitiveness, strengthening Aboriginal engagement, building infrastructure and improving environmental performance and protection.

This year’s conference theme, Innovating for a Strong Canadian Energy and Mining Sector, underlines the importance of natural resources to Canada’s economic future and the continuing need to innovate in order to capture opportunities for all Canadians. Development of our natural resources produces numerous economic advantages for this country, driving investment and creating jobs. However, to maintain our competitive edge and global reputation as a leader in this field, we must look for continual improvement by diversifying our markets, supporting energy innovation to maintain Canadian competitiveness and using energy responsibly.

Key Energy Deliverables

Electricity

Canada and the United States share a highly integrated electricity network, making it a backbone infrastructure for the North American economy. Collaboration among provinces, the federal government and their counterparts in the United States has led to fundamental improvements in electric reliability for Canadians over the past decade.

The report, After the Blackout: Implementation of Mandatory Electric Reliability Standards in Canada, describes improvements made to Canada’s electricity systems over the past 10 years and identifies additional actions to address emerging reliability issues.

Another report discussed at the conference, Regulatory Side-by-Side Governing Permitting of Cross-Border Electricity Transmission Facilities, provides a comparative analysis of the permitting and regulatory processes across Canadian and U.S. jurisdictions for the construction and operation of international power lines.

Ongoing collaboration is critical to address emerging issues facing the integrated electric grid, including cyber security and changes in generation sources.

Energy Efficiency

Governments are uniquely positioned to help industry overcome barriers, improve industry’s access to information and services and inform broad audiences about success stories. The ministers recognize the need for energy-intensive and manufacturing industries to accelerate the adoption of energy efficiency practices, products, technologies and services in order to reduce energy costs and improve productivity, competitiveness and environmental performance.

The report Maximizing Canada’s Energy Advantage: Canadian Industrial Energy Efficiency builds on outcomes of last year’s conference and provides considerations for continued improvement of industrial energy efficiency in Canada. It includes an overview of the state of energy use by industry, the benefits of energy efficiency, challenges and options for addressing those barriers and advancing energy efficiency in the industrial sector.

Technology

The global energy landscape is undergoing significant and rapid change, and nations around the world are investing aggressively in energy technology innovation to gain a competitive advantage. For Canada, the development of advanced energy technologies will be critical to addressing environmental challenges and driving economic growth.

The EMMC Energy Technology Working Group has undertaken a multi-jurisdictional and multi-year effort to advance collaboration on innovation through science and technology. Its report, Taking Action: Moving forward together on energy research, technology and innovation, outlines the case for innovation through collaboration and presents action plans for two “energy innovation clusters”: Improving Environmental Performance in Shale Resource Development, and Distributed Power Generation. The results of these action plans will be reported at next year’s EMMC 2016.

Oil and Gas

The oil and gas sector is a major economic driver for Canada and accounted for 7.5 percent of Canada’s nominal GDP in 2013. Governments in Canada are committed to providing Canadians with authoritative information on the responsible development of energy resources.
The new shale and tight resources web portal is a tool to enhance fact-based public understanding and dialogue concerning shale and tight oil and gas development in Canada. The updated pipeline safety web portal continues to provide Canadians with a cross-country perspective on federal, provincial and territorial pipeline safety regimes.

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Media may contact:

Alexandra Lemieux
Press Secretary
Office of Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and
Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
613-996-2007

or

Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-992-4447

The general public may contact:

Mon.–Fri., 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. EDT
Telephone: 613-995-0947
TTY: 613-996-4397
(teletype for the hearing-impaired)
E-mail: [email protected]

Follow us on Twitter: @NRCan (http://twitter.com/nrcan)

BACKGROUNDER

2015 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference
Supporting a Strong Canadian Mining Sector

Mines ministers from across Canada discussed current opportunities and challenges facing the mining sector at the 2015 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference (EMMC), held in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This year’s Conference theme — Innovating for a Strong Canadian Energy and Mining Sector —emphasized the importance of natural resources to Canada’s economic future. Key issues discussed included support for junior mining companies, the importance of community engagement and ongoing innovation in the mining sector.

Benefits from Mining

Last year, the mining, minerals and metals sector accounted for nearly $63 billion of Canada’s nominal GDP. With more than 200 active mines in Canada producing more than 60 minerals and metals, the sector employed nearly 380,000 Canadians, including about 10,000 Aboriginal persons.

The Canadian mining industry offers many socio-economic benefits to Canadians, including high salaries, skills training for communities, business development opportunities and infrastructure such as roads, ports and railways. Between 2008 and 2012, the mining and select manufacturing sectors — which include mining and quarrying, primary metal manufacturing and non-metallic mineral product manufacturing — contributed on average $3.8 billion in corporate taxes and royalties each year, which are critical to supporting social programs and services for Canadians across the country.

Community Engagement

Community engagement is fundamental for successful mining development.
The ministers talked about the factors that enable communities — both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal — to benefit from mineral resource development, drawing on concrete examples from various jurisdictions.

In support of this discussion, the ministers released four new case studies to be added to the 2014 report Compendium of Good Practices in Community Engagement and Readiness. This joint federal, provincial and territorial compendium now features 25 case studies from governments, communities and industry in Canada that highlight good practices in community engagement and readiness for mineral resource development.

The four new case studies, from Saskatchewan, Quebec, Manitoba and Yukon, span the mining life cycle from exploration, development and production to mine closure and the reclamation of depleted mine sites. The studies reveal how early and sustained engagement and partnerships among governments, industry and communities are critical at each stage of mineral development.

Competitiveness of Junior Mining Companies

The ministers recognized the importance of junior mining and exploration companies to Canada’s economy and discussed the challenges affecting the competitiveness of this sector, such as access to land and capital, the duty to consult, enabling infrastructure and the stability of incentives and government programs.

Building on the Government of Canada’s recent extension of the 15% Mineral Exploration Tax Credit and expanded definition of Canadian Exploration Expenses, the ministers discussed ways to assist junior mining companies, to ensure that they remain competitive in the face of a challenging minerals and metals market outlook, worldwide economic uncertainty, investor risk aversion and new realities in their operating environment.

Innovation in the Mining Industry

The ministers recognized that innovation is key to maintaining the Canadian mining industry’s competitive edge in the global economy and helping companies to improve their environmental performance. The ministers agreed that government efforts to support innovation in the sector must recognize current challenges and opportunities, focus on industry priorities and incorporate strong partnerships.

Since 2009, the Government of Canada has invested over $56 million in the Green Mining Initiative. This initiative invests in research and development in sustainable mining practices, and supports the commercialization of green mining technologies, contributing to an economically competitive mining sector in Canada.

Building upon this success, the Government of Canada recently announced $23 million over five years to stimulate the technological innovation needed to separate and develop rare earth elements and chromite.

National Orphaned/Abandoned Mines Initiative

The National Orphaned/Abandoned Mines Initiative (NOAMI) brings together representatives from the Canadian mining industry, governments, non-governmental organizations and Aboriginal communities to examine the legislative, policy and program framework in Canada. Launched in 2002 by federal, provincial and territorial mines ministers, NOAMI is guided by a multi-stakeholder advisory committee. The ministers discussed how NOAMI addresses issues associated with orphaned and abandoned mines, including the prevention of future abandoned mines and NOAMI’s recommendations for improvements.

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Media may contact:

Alexandra Lemieux
Press Secretary
Office of Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and
Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
613-996-2007

or

Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
613-992-4447

The general public may contact:

Mon.–Fri., 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. EDT
Telephone: 613-995-0947
TTY: 613-996-4397
(teletype for the hearing-impaired)
E-mail: [email protected]

NT5

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