The U.S. and Canadian governments recently issued the Canada-United States Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) Joint Forward Plan, which contains provisions related to the use of natural gas in transportation that the Canadian Gas Association and Canadian Natural Gas Vehicle Alliance say are a ‘win-win’ for both nations.
At the surface, the plan is about generating jobs and economic growth in both the U.S. and Canada by maintaining useful regulations and spurring commercial activity. It will ‘deepen Canada-U.S. regulatory cooperation through new bi-national processes and partnerships’ and, in turn, ‘institutionalize joint planning and collaboration between Canadian and U.S. regulatory agencies.’
A number of initiatives among various industries are in the works. But as it relates specifically to alternative fuels, Natural Resources Canada will work with the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Transportation on developing standards and codes that will help govern the use of natural gas in transportation and increase that sector in each nation.
The three agencies will also ‘explore any opportunities for alignment among stakeholders,’ including information-sharing and the identification of ’emerging areas in natural gas deployment.’
‘Natural gas can help reduce the operating costs of medium-and heavy-duty trucks, transit buses, rail, marine and off-road fleets,’ says Timothy M. Egan, president of the Canadian Gas Association. ‘Greater cooperation between the two countries will help ensure consumer choice, foster economic development and keep Canada competitive, particularly with our biggest trading partner, the United States.’
‘Canada's natural gas vehicle industry looks forward to continued collaboration with Natural Resources Canada to address technical barriers and to provide outreach to fleets interested in natural gas vehicle deployment,’ says Alicia Milner, president of the Canadian Natural Gas Vehicle Alliance.