A new inventory report on greenhouse gases Wednesday has confirmed that Canadian emissions levels continued to drop in most sectors for 2010 except in the oil-and-gas industry's booming oilsands activities.
Canada is required to submit the inventory to the international community as part of its obligations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the latest figures show that the country's overall annual emissions increased by 0.25 per cent in 2010 to the equivalent of about 692 megatonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.
Led by provincial policies in recent years, including the Ontario government's efforts to close its coal-fired power plants, the country's overall emissions have stabilized while the economy continues to grow.
Separate figures released by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers show that annual emissions in-creased in 2010 by 14 per cent for the oilsands sector, while emissions per barrel in that industry increased by two per cent in the same year.
Canada's official report last year generated controversy because of a decision to exclude a breakdown of oilsands emissions from the inventory, even though this breakdown was included the previous year. The missing de-tails eventually revealed that the booming sector's pollution was dramatically rising to levels that would make it difficult for the federal government to meet its own annual emissions target of 607 megatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by 2020.
Environment Minister Peter Kent has repeatedly declined to answer questions on who decided to exclude the details.
Successive federal environment ministers have pledged to regulate pollution from the oilsands sector for more than a decade without delivering a concrete plan.
Report confirms oilsands pollution rising