Electricity emission intensity factors for grid-connected entities

The Director under the Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act (GGIRCA) annually publishes a set of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission intensity factors for electricity use. The published factors must be used by grid-connected entities in quantifying GHG emissions of electricity which is not self-generated, for the following:

  • Offset projects as prescribed in relevant GHG emission offset protocols; 
  • Public Sector Organizations under the Carbon Neutral Government Regulation; and
  • Other customers of BC Hydro and FortisBC who wish to calculate the GHG emissions associated with their electricity use.

The calculation of emissions intensity is based solely on estimates of physical emissions and does not represent any claim or right to the environmental attributes of the electricity delivered to customers. The environmental attributes associated with this electricity may have been retained by, sold or transferred to, third parties inside or outside of British Columbia.

The Province updated the methodology for determining the electricity emission intensity factors. This update came into force starting with the 2021 emission factors. The updated methodology measures "net imports" instead of "gross imports" to more accurately reflect the carbon intensity of electricity consumed in B.C. The change accounts for the decrease from 2020 to 2021.

For more information read the Electricity Emission Intensity Factors Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 188 KB).

Grid factors 

Electricity in B.C. is supplied to customers through the Integrated grid (southern and western B.C.), the Fort Nelson grid (northeast B.C.), and through community generating stations for isolated grid communities (throughout B.C.).

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2022, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):​

·         For the Integrated grid:  11.5

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 486  

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2021, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):​

·         For the Integrated grid:   9.7

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 511  

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2020, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):

·         For the Integrated grid:   40.1

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 530

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2019, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):

·         For the Integrated grid:   29.9

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 560

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2018, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):

·         For the Integrated grid:   25.3

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 572

B.C.’s Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2017, in tonnes CO2-equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh):

·         For the Integrated grid:   31.7

·         For the Fort Nelson grid: 559

Hindcasted grid factors for 2010 to 2016

The following Grid Electricity GHG Emission Intensity Factors for 2010 to 2016 have been developed for Public Sector Organizations that have been reporting their operational emissions under the Climate Change Accountability Act since 2010.

These ”hindcasted” grid emission intensity factors facilitate analysis of emissions trends over time and were determined using a similar methodology to what was regulated under the Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act for the determination of factors up to and including the 2020 factors. Local Governments that report their emissions under the Climate Action Charter may also wish to use these figures.

The emission intensity factors below are expressed in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per Gigawatt-hour (tCO2e/GWh).

Hindcasted grid factors (tCO2e/GWh)

Year Integrated grid Fort Nelson grid
2016 32.8 550
2015 34.2 562
2014 31.6 564
2013 35.0 562
2012 40.1 552
2011 41.6 544
2010 35.7 544

B.C. electrical system

The following image links to a scalable PDF map showing the integrated grid in red, the Fort Nelson grid in blue and isolated grid communities in black. This PDF map is provided as informal guidance to interested parties wishing to examine the electrical system in the vicinity of their community.

For official confirmation of grid connectivity, please inquire with your electricity provider.

Map of B.C.'s electricity transmission grids