Carbon Engineering’s pilot project at Squamish B.C. began in 2018, extracting carbon dioxide from air to convert to liquid fuel. (Carbon Engineering)

B.C. VOTES 2020: NDP promises carbon neutral province by 2050

Trans Mountain lays first B.C. pipe, LNG Canada continues

B.C. NDP leader John Horgan went to Squamish for his latest campaign event in the surprise 2020 election, adding to his series of long-range goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Not only will B.C. eliminate 80 per cent of its current carbon dioxide emissions by 2050, a re-elected NDP government will mandate in legislation that the province will reach a “carbon neutral” state the same year, Horgan said at the headquarters of CO2 extraction pioneer Carbon Engineering on Oct. 2.

That means all new emissions from vehicles, industry and buildings have to be offset by reductions in other places, natural carbon sinks such as additional forest, or industrial-scale removal as Carbon Engineering plans to do.

During the Horgan government’s three years in office, it set the latest 80-per-cent emission reduction target. It has also legislated that B.C. will allow only zero-emission new vehicles to be sold by 2040, which means battery or hydrogen fuel cell power, assuming technology available today.

The commitments are in the NDP’s “CleanBC” plan, developed with the B.C. Green Party to meet a goal of reducing B.C.’s annual emissions 19 million tonnes by 2030. Horgan says this can be done even as work carries on for the LNG Canada and Coastal Gaslink pipeline project across northern B.C., and the Trans Mountain oil pipeline twinning project from Edmonton to an expanded export terminal in Burnaby and increasing supply to refineries in Washington state.

“We believe we have space in our plan for new emissions, but not excessive new emissions,” Horgan said, adding that a smaller liquefied natural gas project at Squamish is still in the works. Since forming a minority government with B.C. Green support in 2017, Horgan’s government strained that working arrangement by offering new tax incentives for LNG Canada.

RELATED: B.C. legislates zero-emission new vehicles by 2040

RELATED: B.C. Greens battle LNG project, NDP tax incentives

Trans Mountain announced this week it has laid the first B.C. pipe in its pipeline twinning project near Kamloops. Work on the Alberta side has been mostly completed, and tank capacity and loading dock expansion for diluted bitumen exports out of Westridge terminal are well underway.

Coastal Gaslink has work camps in place across northern B.C., and the LNG Canada processing and export facility is underway at Kitimat.

Carbon Engineering started its pilot project for extracting CO2 directly from the air at Squamish in 2018, and has gathered investment support from Chevron and other petroleum companies, as well as Alberta oil sands executive Murray Edwards and former Microsoft chairman Bill Gates.

In September, fast-growing Canadian digital sales company Shopify was the first to announce its intent to buy carbon removal on a permanent basis once the technology reaches a commercial stage, and to invest in Carbon Engineering’s latest demonstration project, scheduled to begin operating in August 2021.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicsBC Votes 2020Climate change

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

This Crescent Beach home, located at 12505 22 Ave., was subject of a police search warrant June 18. (Google image)
Civil Forfeiture Office alleges Crescent Beach home used to launder money

Court documents request the home, and $85,000 to be turned over to the government

Incumbents Ravi Kahlon (BC NDP) and Ian Paton (BC Liberals) are set to serve another term in office representing Delta North and Delta South, respectively. (Submitted photos)
UPDATED: Incumbents hold on in Delta North, Delta South

Ravi Kahlon (BC NDP) and Ian Paton (BC Liberals) lead in their respective races; mail-in ballots still to count

Surrey firefighters battle a house fire near the 70A Avenue and 126A Street intersection early Sunday morning. According to a witness, it appears that the occupants were able to get out without injury. (Shane MacKichan photos)
PHOTOS: Fire causes extensive damage to Surrey home

Occupants able to escape without injury: witness

Delview Thanks4Giving committee members Alexa Liptak (left) and Amanda Quibing stand with the donation box outside the school’s front entrance. (James Smith photo)
Thanks 4 Giving food drive going drive-thru due to COVID-19

Organizers hope North Delta residents will come to them for Delview Secondary’s annual food drive

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

NDP Leader John Horgan elbow bumps NDP candidate Coquitlam-Burke Mountain candidate Fin Donnelly following a seniors round table in Coquitlam, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, NDP head for majority in B.C. election results

Record number of mail-in ballots may shift results

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Mounties looking for teen boy ‘unlawfully at large’ from Riverview psychiatric hospital

Nolan Godron left the hospital, located at 2721 Lougheed Highway in Coquitlam, without consent on Saturday

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Most Read