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Face off: Canada versus the EU over fuel-quality directive

Europe doesn’t import any oil from Alberta, but the proposed fuel quality directive has ignited a row between Brussels and Edmonton

In the next few weeks the European Commission (EC) will decide whether to approve changes to the fuel-quality directive (FQD), which stipulates the kind of oil the EU imports. The decision will have major implications for Canada’s oil sands and Europe’s relationship with North America. The EU’s FQD sets quotas for the amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) that can be emitted during the production, transportation and combustion of given fuels. A revision in 2009 required fuel suppliers to reduce their GHG intensity for road transport fuels by 6% by 2020, against a baseline from 2010. To measure emissions reductions, the EU decided to assign carbon values to oil that reflect pollution caused during p

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