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Industrial Sources


  • Very few (to date, only six) of the thousands of chemicals emitted into the air by industrial facilities in Canada are subject to federal regulation.
  • In June 2000, the federal government added fine particulate matter to its toxic substances list; how, if at all, it will be regulated remains to be seen.
  • National ambient air quality objectives exist for only five substances, but these are voluntary goals, in many instances based on outdated science.
  • Province governments play the front line role in regulating industrial emitters through permitting systems that vary from province to province.
  • Governments officials often have a broad discretion to set permit requirements, and to overlook non-compliance with such requirements.

Various strategies and legal procedures have been used to control and reduce industrial source air pollution. These include:

    • air quality objective setting
    • air emission permitting regimes
    • environmental assessment of new or expanded air emission sources
    • voluntary measures including pollution prevention planning and emission reduction programs and emissions trading

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