Oliver told an energy conference in Houston that oil exported from Canada would be covered under an emissions scheme that aims to cut greenhouse gases 17 percent by 2020.
"Canada has announced our intentions to be one of the first major suppliers to the U.S. to regulate GHG emissions from our oil and gas sector," Oliver said.
Canadian pipeline company TransCanada aims to build its Keystone XL pipeline to deliver oil from Alberta tar sands fields to southern U.S. refineries. A draft review of the project from the U.S. State Department said there were few direct environmental effects from Keystone because Alberta production would continue with or without the pipeline.
Nevertheless, Oliver said greenhouse gas emissions tied to oil sands production decreased per barrel 26 percent for the decade ending in 2010.
"The Canada-U.S. energy relationship is the single most important bilateral energy relationship in the world, with Canada remaining the largest source of secure, stable and environmentally responsible oil for the United States," Oliver said.