Carbon Neutral Government – Program Requirements

Under B.C.’s carbon neutral government program – legislated under the Climate Change Accountability Act (CCAA, formerly: Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets Act, GGRTA) and the Carbon Neutral Government Regulation–all public sector organizations (PSOs) follow a five-step process to achieve carbon neutrality:

Five-Step Process

  1. Measure greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from buildings, vehicles and paper use
  2. Reduce emissions by conserving electricity and fossil fuels
  3. Offset remaining emissions by purchasing an equivalent amount of high-quality, made-in-B.C. carbon offsets
  4. Report annually on progress through the Carbon Neutral Action Report (CNAR)
  5. Verify data and emissions

Detailed step-by-step information is available in Becoming Carbon Neutral (PDF, 1 MB).

Timeline for the 2018 Reporting Year

Early 2019: Receive reporting materials

  • Receive email from the Climate Action Secretariat (CAS) containing:
    • The CNAR Overview Instructions & Template or the Small Emitters Form
    • A link to the CNAR Survey Form
    • The Self-Certification Checklist

April 30, 2019: All data due

  • Deadline to load 2018 building, fleet and paper data into SMARTTool

May 15, 2019: Self-Certification Checklist due

  • Email the signed checklist to to attest to the accuracy and completeness of the uploaded data and the adequacy of supporting business processes
  • Receive an offset invoice with the final emissions numbers and the amount of offsets to be purchased for the 2018 reporting year

May 31, 2019: Final CNAR or Small Emitters Form due

  • Email the signed, completed forms to
  • Submit the online CNAR Survey* form (CAS will provide link)
  • Submit payment for offset investment

*Note that PSOs submitting the Small Emitters Form are not required to complete the CNAR Survey

June 30, 2019: Post reports and retire offsets (CAS)

  • Climate Action Secretariat posts all PSO CNAR reports
  • Climate Action Secretariat retires sufficient offsets to achieve carbon neutrality for 2017

Fall 2019: Verify reports (CAS)

  • Climate Action Secretariat engages an accredited, independent third party to verify a sampling of PSO emissions reports

Self-Certification Templates

Archived Guidance Documents