Ontario finalizes higher renewable content rules in gasoline over 2025-2030 with new regulation

Published On: November 26, 2020Categories: Ontario Cleaner Transportation Fuels, Policy and Regulation

“We value Ontario’s continued work to reduce the impact of transportation greenhouse gas emissions in the province.”

The Government of Ontario has announced the consolidation of existing renewable fuel mandates into a new regulation, the Cleaner Transportation Fuels: Renewable Content in Gasoline and Diesel Fuels, and finalized its proposal to increase the current 10% renewable content requirement in the gasoline pool to 15% by 2030.

In 2019, Ontario updated its decade-old 5% mandate to allow a wider range of renewable fuels to meet the gasoline content requirement, and to increase the blending requirement to 10% effective January 1, 2020. The newly announced increase will be staged, with 11% in 2025, and 13% in 2028 before reaching 15% in 2030. These mandated levels will establish the highest minimum renewable fuel blend requirements in force to date for gasoline fuel in Canada.

The new regulation also specifies that renewable content is to have a carbon intensity that is 50% lower than that of regular gasoline by 2030; currently this is set at 45%.

Ontario was the second Canadian province to implement an ethanol blend requirement in 2007, and joins a growing list of provinces that are taking action on reducing transportation emissions in 2020; Quebec has introduced plans to adopt a new renewable fuel standard requiring 15% blending in gasoline and 10% blending in diesel by 2030, Manitoba has proposed to implement a 10% and 5% blend requirement in gasoline and diesel, respectively, effective January 1, 2021, and in July 2020, British Columbia increased its low carbon fuel standard to require a 20% reduction in fuel carbon intensity by 2030.

Ian Thomson, President of Advanced Biofuels Canada, noted “While much of the focus has been on the federal Clean Fuel Standard, provinces have recognized the urgent need for clear market signals to attract capital investment and support a green economic recovery. We know that fuels of the future will be low carbon; having a firm signal that establishes regional demand for the decade ahead supports capital investments in production capacity and fuel infrastructure to support an orderly transition to non-fossil, clean fuels.”

“We value Ontario’s continued work to reduce the impact of transportation greenhouse gas emissions in the province. Over time, we expect to see a diversity of renewable gasoline fuels used to meet the new demand, but ethanol has plenty of room to grow into a larger mandate. Expanding ethanol availability will give Ontario drivers more choice at the pump. Historically, ethanol has been less expensive than gasoline, and this may create the opportunity over time for lower-priced mid-level 15% ethanol blends as has been the case in many US markets. From a broader perspective, the province’s agricultural and forestry sectors and biofuel production facilities can benefit from new demand closer to home.”

“If Ontario determines that more urgent climate action is needed, this update to the regulations provides the framework to bring forward the staged gasoline pool increases on an expedited basis. It could also hasten comparable action in the diesel pool to support even deeper GHG reductions as diesel fuel demand continues to grow. Very low carbon intensity and cost-effective renewable options are widely available today.”

Advanced Biofuels Canada/ Biocarburants avancés Canada is the national voice for producers, distributors, and technology developers of advanced biofuels and synthetic fuels. Our members are global leaders in commercial production of advanced biofuels, with over 14 billion litres of installed annual capacity worldwide. Our members include Canada’s leading advanced biofuels producers and technology innovators and are actively developing new clean liquid fuels production and distribution assets and operations in Canada.