Canada is committed to building a cleaner, energy efficient, prosperous economy that fights climate change and creates jobs. The Government of Canada is taking initiative to cut pollution from all sectors – including transportation, which accounts for one-quarter of our greenhouse gas emissions. With a mandatory target for all new light-duty cars and passenger trucks sales to be zero-emission by 2035, this action is accelerating Canada’s previous goal of 100 percent sales by 2040. To ensure Canada achieves this goal, the Government of Canada is pursuing a combination of investments and regulations to help all industry transition to achieve the 100 percent zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035. Supporting a strong and unified automotive sector to transition towards zero-emission vehicles positions Canadians to benefit economically from this global shift. Increased zero-emission vehicle adoption – from incentives that help with the upfront costs of zero-emission vehicles, to investments in zero-emission charging infrastructure, to partnerships with auto manufacturers will help to re-tool and produce zero-emission vehicles in Canada.
$600M rebate program, but more funds needed
However, this initiative needs money. The government has already poured at least $600 million into a rebate program that offers consumers a break when they buy new electric vehicles in hopes to get more electric vehicles on the road. The existing program offers buyers an upfront discount of up to $5,000 and sellers then have to claim the incentives to be reimbursed. However in order to become more prosperous, the program needs the expansion to include more categories of vehicles, including ones that are currently used. Federal officials have said “Rebates have been popular", but have warned “It won’t be enough to reach the federal government's first target of zero emissions cars”, which makes up 10 per cent of sales by 2025. The transportation industry shares the government's goal of "carbon elimination,” and wants to see all modes of transportation transition seamlessly by the mandatory date.
Currently, the program will support electric vehicle charging infrastructures in parking areas intended for public use (Examples include, but are not limited to: service stations; retail; restaurants; arenas; libraries; medical offices; park and ride; etc). The program will also support future on-street charging stations and workplace refuelling infrastructures. The program will also include MURB charging. MURB is defined as infrastructure in parking spaces where people live (apartments, condos, etc.) For the purpose of the program, to be designated as a MURB the building must include a minimum of three (3) dwelling units. Ample and visible charging stations are key to overcoming one of the top barriers to this uptake: “range anxiety,” or the fear of losing charge mid-trip. It gives drivers peace of mind to know that, when it’s time to fuel up, they can find a plug anywhere, anytime.
The transition to electric vehicles is not a luxury, but a necessity. Canada’s emission-reduction goals are here to help families and businesses save on fuel and maintenance costs. Canadians will continue to see more electric fleets roaming the streets and more Canadians hopping into their EVs and riding off into the low-carbon sunset. 2035 is looking bright.