Following the lead of the United States, Canada has reportedly chosen to employ a fuel economy regulation program for the first time ever, and it's virtually identical to ours. According to the Times Colonist, the differences between the two countries' programs are so minute that you could essentially say Canada has copied our new Corporate Average Fuel Economy guidelines that require automakers to achieve a fleet average fuel economy of around 35 mpg by 2016. Prior to this, Canada did issue emissions guidelines, but it apparently didn't actually require compliance from automakers.

The guidelines for Canada's new emissions standard require automakers operating in that country achieve a CAFE number of 35.5 mpg by 2016. Starting in 2011, vehicles will also have to meet stringent greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) ratings, and a failure to meet the standards will result in monetary penalties. The GHG requirements will become more stringent as time passes. Sound familiar?

Okay, so Canada's new requirements are practically identical to our new U.S. regulations, and that's great because automakers will only have one standard to meet across both countries. Well, almost. It's not yet known if Quebec and British Columbia will adopt the new Canadian standards or attempt to regulate vehicle emissions on their own. Regardless, the new Canadian emissions standards will for the most part allow automakers to make one vehicle that can be sold in both countries with no emissions related modifications needed. Now, if we could just get a few more countries on-board, those pesky European and Japanese cars we've been longing for could make their way Stateside some day. Except for the issue of differing crash standards. Oh, well...

[Source: Times Colonist | Image: TKOwned via CC2.0]