Updated April 2023
Directive 060 requires fugitive emission surveys at a prescribed frequency using either portable organic vapour analyzers (OVA) or optical gas imaging cameras (OGI). However, a company can apply for an alternative fugitive emission management program (FEMP), which may include using new or emerging technologies to detect fugitive emissions. These technologies may be useful at detecting emissions at a lower cost than the standard methods used today.
The following alternative FEMPs have been approved (locations shown below):
|Submitted By||Proposal Type||Detection Technologies||Approx.
# of Sites
|Approval Issued &
Program Start Date
|Program End Date||Executive Summary|
|Cenovus||2 yr Pilot||Aerial methane sensor with OGI follow-up||400||19-May-20||19-May-22|
|Seven Generations (now ARC)||3 yr Full Scale||Baseline OGI survey and aerial methane sensor with OGI follow-up||200||08-Jul-20||08-Jul-23|
|Canadian Natural Resources Limited1||2 yr Pilot||Aerial and truck methane sensor with OGI follow-up||1000||01-Jan-21||31-Dec-22|
|Canadian Natural Resources Limited1||2 yr pilot||Aerial and truck methane sensor with OGI follow-up||600||01-Jan-21||31-Dec-22|
|Canadian Natural Resources Limited1||2 yr pilot||Aerial and truck methane sensor with OGI follow-up||900||01-Jan-21||31-Dec-22|
|SPOG||2 yr Pilot||Aerial and truck methane sensor with OGI follow-up||1200||01-Apr-21||01-Apr-23|
|Enhance Energy Inc.||2 yr Pilot||Continuous monitoring||16||30-Apr-21||31-Dec-22|
|Bonavista||2 yr Pilot||Aerial and truck methane sensor with OGI follow-up||700||30-Apr-21||30-Dec-22|
|Ember Resources||2 yr Pilot||Continuous monitoring||25||16-Sep-21||30-Sep-23|
|WhiteCap Resources Inc.||2 yr Pilot||Continuous monitoring||1||03-Mar-22||31-Dec-23|
|Repsol||2 yr Pilot||Unmanned aerial vehicle with OGI follow-up||93||18-Mar-22||31-Dec-23|
1Program start date amended from 2020 to January 1, 2021, due to implementation issues in 2020.
We learned the following from reviewing alternative FEMP proposals:
- Collaborative programs are possible. Operators within a given area may consider pooling resources to deploy screening technologies across a land base to identify highest emitting sites. It is important to consider how these programs will be designed, how compliance will be achieved across multiple parties, and how performance of these programs will be evaluated.
- Modelling the anticipated emission reductions for a given program design brings greater confidence in the program’s ability to meet the intended emission reduction outcomes. However, implementation provides valuable information on the real-world challenges and benefits that are associated with these programs.
- Sufficient pre-program testing is required to understand how these alternative technologies or methods will perform. The alt-FEMP allowance is not intended to provide the proof of performance, but it is an option to meet compliance obligations in a different way using a well-understood alternative technology.
At the end of each alternative FEMP, companies must submit a comprehensive performance report. These reports include an emission reduction summary, discussion of technology limitations and successes, and a discussion of elements of the program that did not perform as expected. We hope to learn from companies’ successes and failures will inform regulatory changes that might make emissions detections more cost-efficient without sacrificing detection effectiveness.
Alternative Detection Technologies
The AER does not approve individual alternative detection technologies. We approve alternative FEMPs, which may include alternative detection technologies. For more information on available technologies and technology performance testing, see the following websites: