Ottawa, Ontario – Canadians have access to high-quality fuel, which results in lower greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new joint industry and government review of the quality of Canadian gasoline and diesel fuel.

“This government is taking action on a number of fronts to reduce emissions from the transportation sector which accounts for 22 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada,” said Environment Minister Jim Prentice. “Canada’s high-quality fuel helps reduce vehicle emissions and I welcome the recommendations in the report to make our fuel even better.”

The report was developed by a joint technical group at Prentice’s request, following concerns raised that Canada’s fuel quality was below standards, particularly when compared to the U.S. The group analyzed the sulphur in gasoline (naturally found in the fuel, which affects the efficiency of emission control technologies), deposit control additives in gasoline (chemicals added to reduce the buildup of engine deposits), lubricity in diesel (to prevent or minimize fuel injection equipment wear) and the cetane number in diesel (a measure of how quickly and efficiently diesel ignites).

The analysis found that Canadian gasoline and diesel quality is equal to or better than current U.S. quality in three of the four parameters studied, with a small quality gap in deposit control additives.

The group recommended the following:

– Canadian and U.S. regulations are harmonized on gasoline sulphur levels, but the two countries should work together to study further reductions of the levels in gasoline, which could improve air quality.

– Environment Canada and Health Canada will assess the effects of the small quality gap for deposit control additives to determine if there are compelling reasons for action.

– No further action in Canada is recommended on the cetane number or lubricity of diesel, since Canadian diesel is equal to or better than that of the U.S. in these areas.

“We will continue to assess if additional environmental or health benefits can be attained by taking further action on fuel quality,” Prentice said. “It is important for our environment and for our health to continue the work we have begun with industry and in the context of harmonizing with the U.S.”

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