Calculator Methodology

Home Energy

Heating Fuel

Emissions factors were gathered by taking the carbon dioxide equivalent figures referenced from Canada's NIR 2012 (CO2, CH4, N20).

Electricity

Electricity emission intensity rates for Canadian Provinces and Territories were gathered from Canada’s NIR 2012.

US Electricity intensity rates were sourced from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Grid 2012 version 1.0 (2009 data files).

Residential Floor Space

Emissions intensities for residential floor space was determined by gathering information on the total emissions from the operation of residential buildings in each province divided by the total residential floor space in each province.

Total residential GHG Emissions, excluding electricity, was accessed directly from NRCan CEUD (1990-2010). Electricity emissions were determined by taking the total electrical energy use, also listed in NRCan CEUD and applying electricity emissions intensity figures from Canada’s 2012 National Inventory Report submission to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Residential floor space figures were gathered from the Natural Resources Canada Comprehensive Energy Use Database. The most recent figures were used (2010).

Vehicle

Gasoline Emissions Factor

Source(s): Canada National Inventory Report 2012
Assumptions: Emissions Factors taken from Light Duty Gasoline Vehicles (LDGVs) with Oxidation Catalysts.

Diesel Emissions Factor

Source(s): Canada National Inventory Report 2012
Assumptions: Emissions Factors taken from Light Duty DieselVehicles (LDDVs) with Oxidation Catalysts.

Natural Gas Vehicles

Source(s): Canada National Inventory Report 2012

Biodiesel

Fuel efficiency for biodiesel was gathered from the Canadian National Inventory Report 2012.

Ethanol

Fuel efficiency for biodiesel was gathered from the Canadian National Inventory Report 2012.

Vehicle fuel economy from Natural Resources Canada Office of Energy Efficiency.

Travel

Flights

Distance for flights is determined by employing the Halversine formula that measures the great circle distance between two points on the spherical earth using latitude and longitude coordinates.

The following assumptions were used in determining the emissions intensity of each passenger-kilometre flown:

  • All emissions intensities and distances were determined by sourcing the 2012 Guidelines to Defra entitled “DECC’s GHG Conversion Factors: Methodology Paper for Emission Factors (UK DEFRA 2012) with the following adjustments:
  • 1. Flights labeled ‘domestic’, ‘short-haul’ and ‘long-haul’ were renamed ‘short haul’, ‘medium-haul’ and ‘long-haul’ for the purposes of the Carbonzero flight calculator.
  • 2. The maximum distance for flights labeled ‘domestic’ in UK Defra 2012 and ‘short-haul’ in the Carbonzero flight calculator was calculated to be 463km based on the lower number of UK Defra’s guidance of ‘short-haul’ flights. A ‘medium-haul’ flight in the Carbonzero calculator correlates with UK Defra’s guidance for a ‘short-haul’ flight and is equal to 463-1108km. Any flight distance greater than 1108km is classified in the Carbonzero calculator as a ‘long-haul’ flight.
  • 3. The radiative forcing index (RFI) for the Carbonzero flight calculator is set at 1.9 in accordance to Sausen et. Al (2005).
  • 4. Based on the recommendation of UK Defra 2012, an uplift factor of 9% has been applied to account for sub-optimal routeing and stacking at airports during periods of heavy congestion.

Bus

Emissions intensity for bus transportation was calculated by dividing total greenhouse gas emissions from passenger bus transport from the total passenger-kilometers (pkm) travelled; information gathered from NRCan CEUD - 2010 values.

Sources

Sausen et. Al. (2005). Aviation radiative forcing in 2000: An update on IPCC (1999); Meteorologische Zeitschrift, V14, No. 4, August 2005 pp.555-561.

UK Defra (2012). DECC’s GHG Conversion Factors for Company Reporting: Methodology Paper for Emission Factors. UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, July 2012.

Environment Canada (2012). National Inventory Report 1990-2010: Greenhouse Gas Sources and Sinks in Canada.

Natural Resources Canada (1990-2010). Comprehensive Energy Use Database: http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/statistics/neud/dpa/comprehensive_tables/

IPCC - Climate Change 2007, The Physical Science Basis – The working Group 1 contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report. Table 2.14. 100 year values taken for Global Warming Potentials.

Canada's Fuel Consumption Database for Personal Vehicles. Updated for model years 1988 - 2013.

Methodology and/or Emissions Factors last updated: March 25, 2013