Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report

Detailed information for 2008





Record number:


The survey collects, analyses and publishes information on industrial greenhouse gas emissions to support Canada's national and international reporting obligations and the public interest as it relates to climate change and the environment.

Data release - December 10, 2009 (As of the 2009 reference year, data collection will be transferred to Environment Canada.)


Note: As of the 2009 reference year, data collection has been transferred from Statistics Canada to Environment Canada. For further information, please contact the Greenhouse Gas Division of Environment Canada at

The accurate tracking of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is an important part of Canada's overall environmental performance. By providing a more precise picture of the sources and amounts of Canada's GHG emissions, the GHG Emissions Report will contribute to the development, implementation, and evaluation of climate change and energy use policies and strategies.

Details currently collected in this report include emissions of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide as well as emissions of hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, and sulphur hexafluoride.

The Federal Government continues to work in partnership with the provinces and territories to develop an efficient harmonized, single-window domestic reporting system for GHG emissions that supports three complementary objectives:

. to provide Canadians with information on GHG emissions;
. to enhance the level of detail of the National GHG Inventory; and
. to meet provincial and territorial reporting requirements for GHG emissions and other related information.

Reference period: calendar year

Collection period: March 15 through June 1 of the year following the reference period


  • Air and climate
  • Environment

Data sources and methodology

Target population

The target population consists of all facilities operating in Canada emitting 100 kilotonnes or more of CO2 equivalent in the reference year.

A "facility" includes all buildings, equipment, structures and stationary items, such as surfaces and storage piles, that are located on a single site or are located on two or more contiguous or adjacent sites that are owned and operated by the same person and function as a single integrated site. It also includes wastewater collection systems that discharge treated or untreated wastewater into surface waters, pipeline transportation systems, and offshore installations.

Testing of the GHG emissions reporting system was completed for both the questionnaire design and the usability of an Electronic Data Reporting application. In-depth interviews were completed with reporters on their overall impression of the site as well as understanding of specific questions, terminology, definition and instructions. Appropriateness and completeness of response categories were assessed.

The questions on emissions are revised in line with revisions to the legislative requirements of the survey partners.

Instrument design

The federal, provincial and territorial governments through consultation with stakeholders are developing a harmonized "single-window domestic reporting system". This system will meet the needs of all jurisdictions, avoid duplication, and minimize the reporting burden for both Canadian industry and governments. Those facilities who are legally obligated to report greenhouse emissions will be able to do so online through a secure government website.

The site will not only ensure collection of greenhouse gas emissions but will ascertain the transmission of this information to project stakeholders. This site will be developed in phases. Phase one focuses on the largest emitters and basic reporting requirements.

Testing of the Phase one GHG reporting system was completed for both the questionnaire design and the usability of the web-based application. In-depth interviews were completed with reporters on their overall impression of the site as well as understanding of specific questions, terminology, definition and instructions. Appropriateness and completeness of response categories were assessed.

The questions on emissions are revised in line with revisions to the legislative requirements of the survey partners.


This survey is a census with a longitudinal design.

Data are collected for all units of the target population, therefore, no sampling is done.

Data sources

Data collection for this reference period: 2009-03-15 to 2009-06-01

Responding to this survey is mandatory.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents.

The primary collection tool for the GHG Emissions Report is the Electronic Data Reporting (EDR) system found online at the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Site. The first step in reporting is to register the facility. The registration step provides a unique facility ID which will identify a facility and enable the respondent to login to the reporting site. A password will be created upon first access to the site, allowing a respondent to save and resume data entry at a later date. The respondent completes the online report and submits it, then receives a confirmation notice. If a respondent experiences problems with the online reporting system, a help line is available to provide technical assistance.

If a respondent is unable to access the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report online, Statistics Canada can provide the forms in either Excel or PDF format. Information from these respondents is entered in the EDR by employees of Statistics Canada.

All information required by the GHG report must be submitted and/or postmarked by June 1st of the year following the reference period.

View the Questionnaire(s) and reporting guide(s) .

Error detection

Error detection tools have been built into the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report in the form of:

. Value edits (character vs. alpha fields)
. Mandatory fields (i.e. must not equal zero)
. Range edits

It is up to the respondent to ensure the data provided is correct. There are no specific requirements for a facility to have its emissions verified by a third party. However, the information reported by the facility should be verifiable. Respondents are required to keep copies of the requested information, together with any calculation, measurements and other data on which the information is based, at the facility to which it is related or at that facility's parent company located in Canada for at least three years from the date the reporting requirements came into force.


This methodology does not apply.


This methodology type does not apply to this statistical program.

Quality evaluation

The quality of the reported GHG and related information is evaluated at the reporting, post-reporting and analysis phases of the survey to ensure the highest standard.

At the time of reporting, internal edit checks help prevent against transcription errors or errors in units of measure. In addition, all reporters are required to provide the regulating authorities with a signed "Statement of Certification" that attests to the accuracy of the information reported by them.

In the post-reporting phase of this program, quality control is being provided by Statistics Canada for the industrial classification aspects of the report, while Environment Canada and Alberta Environment focus on the specific emission levels reported.

Environment Canada and Alberta Environment conduct analytical reviews of data. Reports on the findings of their analyses are available on their websites.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any data which would divulge information obtained under the Statistics Act that relates to any identifiable person, business or organization without the prior knowledge or the consent in writing of that person, business or organization. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

The collection and dissemination of GHG micro data, which has been based on provincial and federal legislation, are structured using a number of zones or levels of security. These levels include the "Public Zone", the "STC Public Access Zone", the "STC Secure Zone", and the "Confidential Zone".

The public zone is considered the single-window reporting level or the internet level. Data available on the public access zone are controlled by the Minister of Environment Canada. All requests for data below the non-confidential level must be made to Environment Canada or the Government of Alberta authorities.

The STC Public Access Zone is the second level of security and is behind a Statistics Canada firewall. The general public cannot access this zone and again data are available at the aggregate level only. The next two levels of security are for confidential data. Partially completed electronic questionnaires reside in the STC secure zone. Once a questionnaire has been completed, data are migrated and stored on Statistics Canada's Confidential Zone and on an independent confidential network X accessible by Environment Canada and Alberta Environment.

If a reporter wished to keep his data confidential, a confidentiality request must be submitted by mail, with appropriate justification and supporting documentation to Environment Canada. For those facilities residing in Alberta, a confidentiality request with appropriate justification and supporting documentation must be submitted by mail to the Government of Alberta. A determination of whether the information is confidential will be based on an objective analysis of the facts.

Revisions and seasonal adjustment

This methodology does not apply to this survey.

Data accuracy

The respondent is required to complete a "Statement of Certification", signed by the certifying official, on company letterhead, stating that the information contained in the report is accurate and complete to the best of their knowledge.

While considerable effort is made to ensure high standards throughout all stages of collection and processing, the resulting estimates are inevitably subject to a certain degree of non-sampling error. Examples of non-sampling error are coverage error, data response error, non-response error and processing error.

Coverage error can result from incomplete listing and inadequate coverage of the population. The survey population includes those facilities that emit 100 kilotonnes or more of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gases annually. While an invitation letter is sent to the previous year's respondents, it is ultimately up to Canadian facilities to determine if they meet or exceed this threshold and self-identify as belonging to this population.

Data response error may be due to questionnaire design, the characteristics of a question, inability or unwillingness of the respondent to provide correct information, misinterpretation of the questions or definitional problems. These errors are controlled through careful questionnaire design and the use of simple concepts, consistency checks, and automated edits.

Non-response error is related to respondents that may refuse to answer, are unable to respond or are too late in reporting. As this survey is mandatory and facilities face penalties for non-compliance, final response rates can be expected to approach 100%. Imputation is not done for this survey.

Processing error may occur at various stages of processing such as data entry, editing and tabulation. Measures have been taken to minimize these errors. For the majority of facilities, respondents enter the data themselves. Data entry and edits are performed simultaneously due to the spreadsheet design which allows errors to be quickly seen. Tabulation is automated to eliminate human error.

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