Quebec Cap & Trade System for Greenhouse Gas Emissions Allowances

Last updated: 8 March 2024

In 2009 Quebec established Cap and Trade System for Greenhouse Gas Emissions Allowances system in order to limit the emissions and encourage energy saving and growing shares of renewables in the consumption in the highest emitting sectors (i.e. transportation, industry and building). In December 2012 the system was updated with new rules entering into force in January 2013.

The businesses that emit 25,000 metric tons or more of CO2 equivalent a year are subject to the cap-and-trade system. The first compliance period covered 2013 and 2014 and applied only to industrial and electricity sector. The second compliance period covered 2015-2017 and 2018-2020 periods and additionally applied to fossil fuel distributors.

In addition, the cap-and-trade system is open to individuals and other entities that would like to participate in the carbon market, even if there is no regulatory obligation for them to do so.

The Cap and Trade GHG emissions system is a centrepiece of Quebec’s climate action plan spanning the years 2013 to 2020.

From 2013 Quebec’s carbon market was linked with California’s in order to improve liquidity of the market.

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